Clarke Theatre will turn into the windy city for a weekend in March, featuring a take on a classic musical.
The Mission Senior Secondary (MSS) musical theatre class is presenting ‘Chicago: Teen Edition’ at the Clarke from March 2 – 4 at 7 p.m.
The class contains 73 students with teachers Rebecca Meyer and Michael Radnai overseeing the production as artistic director and musical director respectively. Students are split between principle characters, supporting ensemble roles, and production roles.
Auditions for the musical began in October with rehearsals scheduled three to five times per week until March . It’s an out-of-timetable class that the students get credit for.
In the past, MSS musical theatre classes performed High School Musical, Mamma Mia and Grease.
“It’s kind of tricky when we’re picking shows for high school because we have to consider what appeals to our cast and what appeals to the community,” Meyer said. “Then we have to consider how we put on a good show all at the same time.”
MSS student Ava Symons will play the leading role of Velma Kelly in the upcoming musical. She says ‘Chicago’ is one of her favourite musicals and was praying that it would be chosen.
“It’s really special being able to share such a nerve-wracking moment and totally go out of our comfort zones together,” Symons said. “I’m not super nervous. I’m more worried of running out of breath while I’m dancing.”
Meanwhile, Joey Crocker will play a leading role of Billy Flynn. He says people tell him the role suits his personality perfectly.
“One thing I’m not looking forwards to is the several tons of monologues I have — I think there’s about five,” Crocker said. “It is a scary thought. With one with one wrong move, I can slip up and I have to rebound myself, which is something I’m not really fully prepared for, but something I am absolutely ready to do.”
Crocker says the process of practicing for a show and doing a show is incredibly different.
“When you’re practicing for a show, you know you can mess up and you know you can fix stuff, but when you’re doing a show the stress is on,” he said.
Tickets for Chicago: Teen Edition are available at the Clarke Theatre Box Office and the MSS Main Office with a $17 fee for general admission and $15 for students and seniors.