Every spring is an exciting time for students involved with the NHS drama department, as they prepare to bring a new musical to the stage. Following last year’s successful production of the The Little Mermaid, this year’s adventure takes us into the world of Willy Wonka and his delicious chocolate factory. Those familiar with the Ronald Dahl classic, will recognize the the story of Willy Wonka, played by junior, Austin Ebel, who begins a search for someone to take over his candy empire as he get’s closer to retirement. In order to find the perfect heir, he places five golden tickets in his delectable Wonka bars for children to find. Freshman, Cayden Schober, portrays Augustus Gloop, a German child with a big appetite. Exchange student, Annika Mueller, portrays Mrs. Gloop, and has been practicing with Cayden, in order to get his German accent just right! Spoiled child Veruca Salt, is played by junior, Delaney Genson. Gum obsessed Violet Beauregarde will be portrayed by junior, Skylar Kyser, while Mike Teavee, who can’t seem to focus on anything but his television, phone, and video games, is portrayed by sophomore, Josh Bowen. Finally, both eighth grader, Isaac Hoffer, and his understudy, seventh grader, Dustin Ashton, have been working hard to portray Charlie Bucket, who yearns to find the final golden ticket!
Those familiar with the story of Willy Wonka will recognize such songs as “Cheer Up Charlie” and “I’ve Got a Golden Ticket,” and will enjoy new songs specifically written for the stage such as, “I Eat More,” and “Think Positive.” When asked about the best part of being involved in the musical, Senior Hannah Moore, who portrays Mrs. Bucket, stated, “It brings everyone together! It’s an experience to share with old friends and new. That’s just downright fun!” Senior, Sydney Boiselle, who portrays Grandma Josephine explained, “I like spending time with everyone involved and working as a team to make a great show.” Senior Aaron Grant, who has served as this year’s assistant director concluded, “I like seeing everything come together!”
This year marks director Annette Slater’s 20th NHS production! Along with serving as the drama teacher, directing the NHS Acapella choir, serving as the grades 7-12 choral director, and serving as the choir director at First St. John’s Lutheran Church in Toledo, the NHS spring musical production, is one of Mrs. Slater’s biggest responsibilities. Recently during one of her drama classes, Mrs. Slater was asked how she chooses who to assist her with such a big production. Her simple response is that she chooses those who have strengths in areas other than her own.
Alumnus Amelia (Renfro) Burkey, has served as the choreographer for over a decade. She never disappoints in coming up with great dances that add to the musical performances. After taking a brief hiatus, Kris James returned for the production of Grease, and has been back at it ever since. Her main responsibility is to handle the layout and production of the musical program. This includes creating bio’s for each of the cast and crew members as well as creating the ads for all those who help in donating to the show’s production. Additionally, her eye on detail, comes in handy in regards to painting sets and making sure that the smallest details, such as Wonka candy bars, are perfected! Finally, alumnus, Cristina (Rodriguez) Toflinski, serves as Mrs. Slater’s right-hand woman. From assisting with blocking and helping students memorize lines to helping the paint crew and coordinating stage makeup, Mrs. Toflinski helps wherever is needed.
Mrs. James explained that she enjoys that all of the directors have different strengths and that each respects the others. She also added that it helps that directors, though usually exhausted, have a lot of fun in the process! Mrs. Toflinski explained that the best part of being involved in the musical is getting to know the students on a different level outside of the classroom. Mrs. Slater concluded that the best part for her is, “Seeing the kid’s faces light up when something sinks in and they accomplish that one part that’s been giving them trouble. Show nights are always wonderful because that’s when all the hard work and late nights practicing pay off!”
The NHS Drama Department will perform this weekend, Friday and Saturday night at 7:30pm and Sunday, at 2:30pm. Tickets can be purchased at the door. We hope that you can take the opportunity this weekend to see the hard work and dedication of so many of our NHS Rangers. There are plenty of surprises in store and even a few guest appearances. Join us in the NHS Auditorium for this year’s spring musical production of Willy Wonka the Musical!
Interested in Open Enrollment at NHS?
Thursday, March 30th from 6 – 7:30pm, NHS will be hosting a Community Open House for those interested in open-enrollment for the 2017-2018 school year. More information can be found at http://www.northwoodschools.org/article/14102
Teen Institute 2nd Quarter Event
This event will take place Saturday, March 25th from 12pm – 3pm at NHS!
Join Us for the Final Walk-Through of Our “Olney” Buildings