Monday, March 27, 2017

A Final Curtain Call

The high school's spring musical performance of Gypsy was held between March 9th and 11th, with four shows. This was the last show of Julia's senior year, and I can't believe that she has reached the end (?) of the road. She wasn't in the fall show of her freshman year, but beginning with her favorite musical of all time, Les Miserables, in the spring, she has done every show since. Little Mermaid and Oliver! sophomore year. Footloose and Music Man junior year. And Bye Bye Birdie and Gypsy senior year.
Les Miserables, "bystander #2"

The Little Mermaid was probably the most fun from a costuming perspective (a pursuit that would dominate Amp's falls and springs for three plus years...). Shame I can't seem to find a picture.
Post-Oliver, with Fagin

Oliver! in sophomore year was a highlight. I loved the movie of this show as a kid, and I still found it very enjoyable as an adult. There are several great songs in this show.
Oliver! set, curtain call

Junior year started with Footloose. I can honestly say that I had never seen the popular movie of this (with Kevin Bacon), so I didn't really know what to expect other than knowing the title song from the radio growing up. I was surprisingly pleased. This was a good story and a good show.

Spring of junior year was The Music Man. I had seen the movie of this as a kid, and it felt like it would be pretty dated. It was, but a good show nonetheless, with some good songs.
Music Man w/BFF C

Senior year unfortunately started with a dud. Bye Bye Birdie was not a great show. The kids did fine with it, but it was an outdated sexist bit of fluff without a whole lot of redeeming music. My least favorite of the seven Jules was in, but she definitely nailed it as "townswoman".
Townswoman in Bye Bye Birdie

Senior year ended strong, though, with Gypsy. I had never seen this show until catching the recent version they showed on PBS "Great Performances" over the winter (starring Imelda Staunton, the actress who played Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter movies). I really like this one a lot. This was a good story, had good songs, and the kids did a fabulous job.
Jules and Gypsy Rose Lee, Gypsy

The second annual GVHS Performing Arts Association banquet was held on Sunday March 26, and it was a nice affair (this is a great event and I hope they keep doing it!). The kids got to bask in their accomplishments, with slide shows, videos, and a slew of awards. In addition to her senior award plaque with the names of all seven shows she was in, Julia won the student-voted Senior Service Award (Girl) for the Fall Musical. This came as a complete surprise, and was a moving moment for Amp and I.

Drama Club has been a wonderful experience for Julia, and I will be forever grateful to the many different kids throughout the years who have taken her under their wing, being a friend to her, and helping her through the countless hours of practice time. Accomplishment is a relative thing, and while some parents get to be proud of their kid for being Jean Valjean in Les Miz, or Ariel the Little Mermaid, or Gypsy Rose Lee, we couldn't possibly be more proud of our "bystander #2", our "townswoman" or our "lady in a red hat". She was absolutely positively the best "bystander #2" ever!

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