Romantic comedy to hit Shaler stage
Shaler Area High School students will travel from the bright lights of the New York stage to the wild west in the musical adventure “Crazy for You.”
The romantic comedy incorporates many songs written by Ira and George Gershwin and follows Bobby Child, played by freshman Dan Bittner, as he travels from New York to Deadrock, Nev., after being rejected by Bela Zangler, a famous producer of the Zangler Follies at the Zangler Theater, for the opportunity to dance with the show.
In Deadrock, Bobby Child meets Polly, played by senior Jess Dorow, who is the only woman left in the distressed mining town, and he falls in love.
In an attempt to save Polly's family's theater, which his banking family sent him to foreclose on, Bobby Child impersonates Zangler and, along with the help of the Follies dancers, sets out to put on a show to pay off the theater's mortgage.
The misadventures continue when the real Zangler, played by junior Jordan Schreiber, comes into town and Polly discovers the ruse.
Senior Alexa Boehler, who plays Tess, the dance director for Zangler Follies and Zangler's love interest, said each character has his or her own subplot.
“I think it gives it more depth because there are many stories in the story line,” she said.
Director Kristin Demsey said she tries to alternate between modern and classic musicals each year and “Crazy for You” will be a significant deviation from last year's production of “Tarzan.”
“It's a lot of technical elements we're piecing together,” Demsey said. “There's difficult pit music and putting that with the vocals and full cast numbers and all the tapping, we're pushing it.”
The large cast of 101 students is working closely with the 35 musicians providing the music and 30 students on stage crew to put together all of the show's elements.
“We have a pretty new and young cast,” said Jess Dorow, who plays Polly. “There are seniors … but also a lot of newer faces who are bringing a lot to the table.”
One of the new additions is Bittner, a freshman, who joins the cast as the lead character.
“I've never worked with such talent before,” Bittner said. “It's nice to work with people who love what they do.”
Many of the student actors are discovering new talents by learning to tap dance for this year's production, from choreographer Cassie Dudley. Meanwhile the musicians are faced with their own challenge of performing Gershwin's technical score.
“It's a lot of jazz and ragtime,” said Anthony Imhof, a senior who plays trumpet in the orchestra pit. “It's really loud and pulls the audience into all the dances. And it's difficult, so the pit has to work really hard this year.”
Roslyn Mizgorski, a junior, has been working with the cast, director, assistant director and choreographer as the blocking apprentice to stage the actors so each student is featured on stage. This became challenging with the large cast numbers, a mirrored scene between Bobby portraying Zangler and the real Zangler, and even a gun fight between the Deadrock cowboys.
“Like all other Shaler shows, I think it displays our talent really well,” Mizgorski said. “Between the comedy, there is a love story blossoming between Polly and Bobby — there is something for everybody.”
Bethany Hofstetter is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-772-6364 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Photo Gallery “Toddler and Preschool Fitness” at the Northland Public Library
- Award-winning North Hills band director takes teaching music to new octave
- Business as usual despite Perry Highway work
- Pine-Richland eighth-grader earns Eagle Scout award
- ‘Disney’s Beauty and the Beast’ gives Hampton native opportunity to shine
- Millvale library turning toward solar power thanks to Sun Club donation
- Recycling efforts growing at Hampton’s Poff Elementary
- Honorary society for math coming to Shaler Area