In April, the theater program put on a three-show production of Rodger and Hammerstein’s Cinderella at Arlington Music Hall. It was complete with amazing dress changes, hilarious horses, and astounding musical numbers. The cast had been working tirelessly on this event since the beginning of the spring semester.
All this hard work went towards perfecting their musical numbers and lines. This was an all-school event, so anyone, even those not previously involved in the theater could try out and all grades were included in the production.
Freshman Jewel Walker, also active in choir, basketball, and cheer, graced the stage as Cinderella.
“When I heard her sing, I said, ‘Oh what a voice!’” remembers Theatre Director Marsha Bryan. “My concern was that she was a freshman, but she handled the role beautifully!”
The whole theater was blown away by her voice and confidence. Choir Director Valerie Trentham loved getting to hear Jewel’s angelic voice while working with her in choir.
“Every moment Jewel opens her mouth is golden,” Mrs. Trentham said.
Surprisingly, this was Walker’s first theater experience.
“I came from Fine Arts School, so I did choral singing for two and a half years as an actual training student, but this is my first year doing both theatre and singing,” Walker said.
She wasn’t nervous about her audition, because she was not expecting to get a big part.
“So actually when I originally auditioned, I did not audition for Cinderella,” Walker said. “It was really exciting to find out that that is what I got, and I was so excited and so ready to take on the challenge.”
However, Junior Ryan Evans, who played the Prince in the production, knew exactly what part he was auditioning for.
“I have a lot of qualities that Prince Charming has,” Evans said.
When asked about his favorite scene, Evans responded, “I like the scene where I’m talking to my dad, the king, about the ball, and how I’m not really fond of the idea but my mother, the queen, is, so I go along with it.”
His love for music and artistic ability to produce music pushed him into theater and what made him stay was Mrs. Bryan’s welcoming smile. The lack of guys to fill male roles is a challenge in theater, considering it is a female-dominated program.
“We had a whole lot of guys graduate from our theater department, so we didn’t have a whole lot of guys left, and Cinderella required at the minimum three guys. We had four or five, so we thought ‘we can do this!’” Mrs. Bryan said.
Both directors raved about the transformation scene, where Cinderella’s peasant dress magically transforms into a beautiful ball gown, and all of the details and parts that went into making the magical moment.
“We had pumpkins and mice and butterflies and rabbits and then we had fog and lights and the carriage,” Mrs. Bryan said.
“It was the perfect mix of all the hardest things in theater all accumulating in that one scene and it came off beautifully, because they are all so incredibly talented and well trained,” Mrs. Trentham said.
Cinderella was an amazing hit, selling out multiple nights and touching the hearts of the audience. Anyone unable to see the show, missed out. It was a beautiful blend of talent and art.