Cinderella comes to MCHS

Friday, May 5, 2017
Lindsay Amonette, a Marshall County High School student, is cast as Cinderella in the school’s theatrical production this weekend.
Tribune photo by Scott Pearson

The young actors at Marshall County High School hope that the slipper fits this weekend.

The MCHS Musical Theatre department is presenting the classic tale of magic and romance, Cinderella.

Courtney Primus, in her fourth year teaching theatre at MCHS, directs the show and is excited with how well the mostly senior cast has come together.

Lindsay Amonette is cast as Cinderella, the poor girl who becomes a princess.

Tazanea Witherspoon serves as Cinderella’s Fairy Godmother.

Haley Porter is Cinderella’s not-very-nice stepmother, and Jenny Shonk and Gretchen Wells play her vain and not very bright stepsisters.

Jay Potts is the Prince, who doesn’t think that there is any girl in the kingdom for him, and Houston Ownby and Savannah Gipson play his parents, the king and queen, who don’t think the prince will ever find true love.

Jesse Velez plays the royal herald. Other seniors in the ensemble are Jackson Long, Rosa Middaugh, and Bobby Mullenix.

The musical will be presented Friday and Saturday evenings at 7 p.m., with a Sunday matinée at 2 p.m. Tickets for the public are available at the door for $10.

Two productions will be held during the school day for students to attend.

The show takes place in the lecture hall at the school, to the left of the main school entrance. Signs will be placed indicating the entrance to the performance.

This is the second year of the musical theatre program at the high school.

The Musical Theatre department was designed as a cross departmental program, including Primus’ theatre students, Alise Dumser’s choral students, and the visual art students who do the set decoration.

“We want to introduce the arts into the school as a whole,” said Primus. “We want to present different types and genres of musicals. ”Auditions are open to students with at least one semester in choir or the introductory theatre class.

Each year’s production is based on who is available in the class. One reason they went with Sweeney Todd, a musical thriller about a Victorian era barber turned murderer, last year, Primus said, was that they had a lot of good male voices and needed a production with several male parts.

This year the students decided to go with lighter fare, choosing the Rogers and Hammerstein version of Cinderella first adapted for television in 1957.

Primus emphasized that the production is student-driven, allowing them to put into practice what they are learning in the classroom.

The learning opportunities extend beyond the arts as well.

A great deal of historical research goes into the actors understanding and establishing their characters.

She said that students were surprised to be using equations learned in math classes in order to figure out elements of the set design.

One thing the students have learned, based on the dress rehearsal, is how to present a musical that captures the magic and fun of the source.