BY MARY KAY SWEIKAR
Schlarman Academy junior high and high school students will touch the hearts of young and old alike when they present the story of Cinderella for their spring musical.
Show times are at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and at 2 p.m Sunday in the Paul Shebby Gymnasium at Schlarman Academy North.
The musical is based on the fairy tale Cinderella, written by Charles Perrault. The story revolves around a young woman forced into a life of servitude by her cruel stepmother and self-centered stepsisters who dream of a better life. With the help of her fairy godmother, Cinderella is transformed into a beautiful princess and finds her prince charming in the end.
Cinderella is the only Rodgers and Hammerstein musical written to be performed on television. It was originally broadcast live on CBS in 1957, with Julie Andrews playing the title role. This broadcast was seen by more than 100 million people, and was subsequently remade for TV in 1965 and again in1997.
Ann Soderstrom, director of the Schlarman production, said, “This is the original Cinderella musical — sweet and simple, and very romantic. It’s the kind of entertainment that the whole family can enjoy. The students are really working hard on this musical, and they’re also having a lot of fun,” she added.
Cast members include Maria Rademacher as Cinderella, Sam Gross as the prince, Jesse Davis as the king, Emily Turner as the queen and Briana Welsch as the stepmother.
Other actors are Megan Chamberlain as Portia, Heidi Hoess as Joy, Gracie Black as the godmother, Joslyn Dietzen as the herald, Bridgit Bateman as the chef/steward, and Pedro Linares as captain of the guard.
Ensemble members are Sissy Romack, Clayton Bateman, Olivia Craig, Emily Melecosky, Hannah Melecosky, Elizabeth Melecosky, and John O’Brien. The stage manager is Meredith Black.
Maria Rademacher, a junior, is excited to perform on stage for the first time.
“I really love to sing, and this was my first opportunity to even try out for a show,” she said, “but I plan to do more acting in the future.”
Rademacher is pleased many of her friends also have acting parts in the show.
Senior Megan Chamberlain has acted in at least seven productions during her four years at Schlarman.
“Each show is unique, and a classic story like Cinderella is always fun to put on,” she said.
Chamberlain said it’s challenging for her to play Portia, who is the stepsister that acts stupid.
“But it’s perfect that I’m constantly bickering with the other stepsister, Joy, who is played by my good friend Heidi,” she added.
Soderstrom encourages little girls to come to the Cinderella musical dressed up in a princess costume to add to their enjoyment of the show.
Tickets for Cinderella cost $5 for adults and $3 for students, and can be purchased at the door before each performance.