by Fiona Haze
The Tony Award-winning musical Guys and Dolls will be performed at the American School of Warsaw on Thursday, October 18th at 18.00, Friday, October 19th at 18.00, and Saturday, October 20th at 14.00. With music and lyrics composed by Frank Loesser and the book written by Jo Swerling, Guys and Dolls was a huge hit during the 1950s, was performed on Broadway 1,200 times. Will our High School production be able to deliver this musical successfully?
Four teachers are leading the High School production. The director of the play Mr. Pavlos, a theater teacher; the musical director Ms. Bechdoldt, a music teacher; the choreographer is Ms. Stein, a dance teacher; and costume designer is by Ms. Ronaldo, an English teacher.
Mr. Pavlos describes the play as a love story about two different couples during the 1950s in New York City. While the two men are gamblers and somewhat similar, the two women couldn’t be more different. One is a showgirl at a nightclub, while the other wants to save the gamblers souls. He also describes the musical as a comedy, and says there is a lot of dancing and singing involved.
According to Mr. Pavlos, the students wanted a big, inclusive musical, which Guys and Dolls surely is. It also has humor, is fast-paced and set in a good time period.
While the play itself seems a good choice, it has been a tricky process to prepare for it. Mr. Pavlos describes the preparation like “cooking with gas,” meaning that every rehearsal has counted.
Ms. Ranado, the costume designer, states that there have been a few challenges with completing her side of the play. The budget has been tricky, but her team, Julia Young and Ms. Cienska, have spent hours trying to find costumes in Warsaw, as well as hours spent at sewing machines and with hot guns. She says that Mr. Stein’s theatre costume room has helped them a lot, too.
Another challenge, according to Ms. Ranado, was also the time frame. She tells Warrior News that six weeks was too little time to make anything from scratch.
When asked about the positive aspects, Mr. Ranado said that she enjoys watching the students transform into character with help from the costume designs. She also said that Julia Young, a 10th grade student, was the only student to helped her with the costumes. She was a critical asset to the team.
Marcelina C., a 10th grader, plays the role of a Hot Box Girl in the musical. She states that she believes that the Hot Box Girls will be able to perform very well, in particular a dance which will look very professional if done correctly. She also believes that the positive aspect of being part of the play is that she gets to meet people and try out new things, since this is her first musical. She really enjoys the costume change, as well as the hair and makeup and dresses. One negative aspect, the only negative aspect, she states, is the fact that taking part in a musical is quite time consuming.
Caleb Y., a 10th grader, is part of the backstage and set design. He thinks that the play will be a huge success, since this musical is such a huge scale production with many people working on the sets and in the cast.
Niko T., a 9th grader, is playing the role of a Hot Box Girl as well. She states that it has been a difficult process which has required a lot of hard work from everybody taking part of the musical. She also states that everybody taking part in the play is excited for performance day, but that they still need to work on some minor details. She believes that the musical has been very fun, but still exhausting.
Ian W., a 10th grader, is playing the role of Nicely-Nicely Johnson. He says that one of the positive aspects of taking part of the play is the fact that he gets to work with such a skilled cast, crew, and directors, which makes his experience as an actor incredible. He also enjoys playing his character, which makes him understand the feeling of the 1950s.
According to Ian, while the play is a lot of work, there is nothing as amazing as hearing the audience laugh. He ends with saying that he looks forward to acting in the play and hopes to see a bunch of people in the audience.