High School Musical: Advanced Theater class’s show premieres tomorrow


From left to right: Adam Schorhum, Biz Fletcher, Kai de Groot, Nicola Bailey, Jemma Helzer-Koch, Annabel Contreras, Andrew Diffenderfer

Directed by students, High School Musical showcases the talents of the fourth period Advanced Theater class. The performance is in the EPAC May 26 at 7 P.M.

Seniors Jack Forgea and Leyla Bultan are co-directing the show this year, with seniors Michelle Capuno and Timmy Braun as co-choreographers. Seniors Kathryn Lyytikainen and Ally Stancavage are the vocal directors. The team works collectively to direct, block, and teach the cast their vision of High School Musical.

From left to right: Annette, Andrew, Adam

The team of directors chose High School Musical because it struck a balance between showcasing talent and being unopposed.

“We had thrown around a lot of ideas but this one was the one that everyone was most excited about and … it just kind of felt perfect,” Kathryn said.

Jack was inspired to be a director because of his previous experience directing Holiday Package, another student directed show.

Annette McGuire plays Ms.Darbus, the theater teacher


“I wanted to do a bit more on a larger scale,” he said. “It’s a learning process; I learn as much as the actors do. It’s also been pretty fun to create a musical and have scenes look the way you want them to and being able to take the script and put your own spin on it.”

Michelle works closely with the other directors to teach dances and blocking. Michelle has been choreographing the class shows since their sophomore year, and has worked to stay organized when teaching dances to others.

Michelle asserts that a unique aspect of the class show is the diverse cast of performers it showcases.

“There’s a lot of underdogs that don’t get showcased when we do main stage productions. We get to showcase them in this class show which is sometimes more fitted to their tee, and things like that. [I] especially want to shout out our female lead Gabriella who is going to be played by Annabel Contreras who has a beautiful voice that I just feel hasn’t been showcased in the past years … and I feel like this is really a time for her to shine and a bunch of other people that you wouldn’t usually see in shows before the class show,” they said.

Andrew Diffenderfer and Annabel Contreras

Their enjoyment is fueled by teaching creations to others.

“Seeing the surprise or the fun that they have doing something that I created is very validating and like a very energetic moment for me,” Michelle said.

Jack is confident that the character work of the actors will pay off in the end.

“[These] people feel like they’re in a high school because quite frankly they are,” he said.

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