Carisa Schreiner and Dawn Mefford led the Frederick High School Choir in a production of the Broadway play “Sister Act” on Nov. 16 and 17. The play opened to a large crowd Thursday night and was an immediate hit.
“Sister Act” is a musical based the movie with the same name, which successfully premiered in 1992. The play contains music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Glenn Slater. Whoopi Goldberg played Deloris Van Cartier, a lounge singer who witnesses her married gangster boyfriend murder someone.
Deloris is then placed in witness protection where no one would think to look for a worldly lounge singer; a convent. Deloris must give up her worldly ways and portray herself as the holy Sister Mary Clarence.
Senior Brooke Orr played Deloris Van Cartier. This was her last performance in a high school musical and she certainly made her last role a memorable one. Orr’s energy on stage is contagious. She had the audience laughing with nearly every line she delivered. The choir department will surely miss Orr next year.
“While performing in my last high school play was sad,” Orr said, “I had so much fun. I loved putting together ‘Sister Act.’ It was definitely my favorite musical I’ve eve been in. I’ve made lots of memories by being in plays that I will treasure forever.”
Orr plans to continue doing musical theatre in college.
Molly Biggs is another senior leaving big shoes to fill in the choir department. Biggs portrayed the perky and ever happy Sister Mary Patrick. Biggs’ over the top performance had the audience laughing over and over again. She has a big stage presence that will be missed next year.
“Looking at the music was very intimidating on the first day of practice,” Biggs said, “but I’m so glad that Mrs. Schreiner chose this to be my last high school musical. Dawn Mefford always does a fabulous job with choreography, but this musical has to be one of the best that I’ve ever done from a dancer’s point of view. The musicals always come together beautifully after weeks of late-night practices and dress rehearsals and we couldn’t do it without all of the people who work so hard to get our musical to where it needs to be every year. I’m definitely going to miss being on that stage when I leave high school.”
This was the last musical for several seniors but based on the performances of those who played in supporting roles, their shoes won’t be too hard to fill. It will be interesting to see who will step into the leading roles next year. It takes a certain amount of dedication to take on the leading roles; to work long hours learning choreography and lines while still maintaining grades and other extra curricular activities and these young men and women knock it out of the park every year.
Senior Kent Treadwell played Curtis, the married gangster boyfriend of Deloris Van Cartier and did a phenomenal job with the part. He made the role fun to watch and the audience loved him.
“It was a really funny musical so it seemed easy to learn all the lines and songs.,” Treadwell said. “Mrs. Schreiner is always hard on us but she does such an excellent job getting us to the final night. I have so many great memories from the musicals we have done the past seven years. This one was probably my favorite of all.”
Junior Aaron Dill played Monsignor O’Hara. Dill’s line delivery was great. His timing was nearly perfect for every joke, allowing the audience to laugh and clap before he moved on to his next line. It was clear he worked hard learning his lines and it paid off with a successful performance.
Malachi Newton played Joey, one of the gangsters who is after Deloris. Newton had a song and dance number that pushed the envelope as far as high school musical dance numbers go but audience members really enjoyed Newton’s performance. Newton is a talented actor and made the role his own.
Junior Kade Hicks played Sweaty Eddie the police officer who helps Deloris hide in the convent. Hicks has played small roles in the past but this was the first time the audience was able to see his full potential. If thunderous applause is any indication, they loved him. It will be exciting to see what part he gets to play in his senior musical next year.
“Sister act stood out to me because of how crucial the small parts were because they were all significant in the story line to bring it to life,” Hicks said. “I also liked the personalities of each character and the humor used in the play. The songs in the play made everything better, from meeting the nuns and meeting Joey and TJ as they took the audience to a place called TJ town.
“I liked playing Sweaty Eddie because it reminded me of me,” Hicks continued. “I’m shy and also a very caring person. Sweaty Eddie wanted to make Deloris realize he was “that guy” so he finally steps out of his comfort zone and shows her the kind of guy he really is. To step out of my comfort zone with my first solo made me feel exultant. I was happy to realize I actually had a good singing voice. I was proud of myself for pushing my boundaries and I want to thank Mrs Schreiner, Dawn and my mom for helping me with that.”
Hicks was right. No matter the part, small or large, each player made the role his or her own. The dedication displayed by each of these young actors, actresses, and each member of the technical crew from scenes to stage managers to light and sound technicians, was phenomenal and culminated in a highly successful production.
Reach Kathleen Guill at 580-379-0588, ext. 2602.
Rachel Benson, Kendyll Ellis, Molly Biggs, Maggie Blankenship, Trinity Nolan, Laney Kinder, Chloe Fraley, Caleigh Middick, Rachel Mitchell, Evelyn Barrera, Caris Challacombe, Abby Espinosa, Shelbie Martell, Yuki Zheng and Ariyanna Flores played nuns in the High School musical production of “Sister Act” held Nov. 16 and 17.