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Tiffin University to showcase ‘Next to Normal’ musical, host accompanying events




Cast members for "Next to Normal." (Contributed Photo)

Tiffin, Ohio — Tiffin University’s School of Creative and Media Arts will be showcasing four student performances of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical, “Next to Normal,” from March 16 through March 19, under the guidance of Justin DeLong, Instructor of Music.

The performances will take place in the Marion Center, starting at 7 p.m. on March 16, 17, and 18, with an additional matinee performance scheduled for 1 p.m. on March 19.

Written by Brian Yorkey with music by Tom Kitt, “Next to Normal” won three 2009 Tony Awards, including best musical score, and addresses difficult topics such as drug abuse, grief, loss, suicidality, and ethics in modern psychiatry. DeLong expressed his excitement in helping to bring this story to life for the community, stating that the students have been working hard to bring authenticity and empathy to their roles.

The performance is being celebrated with additional events on campus. On March 10, as a part of TU’s Engaged Fridays series, the University has declared the day as “Creativity and Mental Health Day.” At 2 p.m. at Chisholm Auditorium in Franks Hall, a lecture titled “Creativity and Madness: Creating Light in the Darkness of the World” will be presented by Dr. Jonathan Appel, Tiffin University Professor of Psychology, and Dr. Dohee Kim-Appel, Heidelberg University Professor of Counseling. The lecture will be a conversation with the musical’s themes, discussing the historical and scientific relationships between madness, insanity and creativity, both as an expression of neurological and psychological diversity and as a tool for expressing and healing a wounded psyche. The event is free and open to the public.

Additionally, at 3 p.m. on the same day, TU Director of Counseling and Wellness, Erin Jensen Skeel LPCC-S, along with Performing Arts students, will offer insights into creative ways to cope with life’s stress.

Tickets for “Next to Normal” are available for purchase at this link and are priced at $15 for adults or $5 for students with a valid student ID. For any queries regarding the musical, please contact Justin DeLong at or (419) 448-3391.

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