Granby: MPHS thespians mean business
November 14, 2008
It might not teach you how to get rich quick or even survive today’s economy, but the new play at the Middle Park High School is sure to be good for some laughs.
From the authors of “Guys And Dolls” comes “one of the most delightfully irreverent musicals of all time,” presented by Middle Park High School drama cast and crew. The local high school production runs two more performances, tonight and Saturday night.
The play, “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” is a humorous look into big business “and all it holds sacred.” Storyline follows the rise of J. Pierrepont Finch who uses a small get-rich-quick method handbook with the same title as the play.
To climb the corporate ladder from window washer to high-powered executive, Finch tackles such familiar-but-potent dangers as the aggressively compliant “company man,” the boss favorite, whiny nephew, office parties, back-stabbing co-workers, caffeine addiction, and true love.
The script is written by Abe Burrows, based on the 1952 book of the same name by Edward “Shepherd” Mead IV. Mead’s start in New York City’s advertising scene gives an insightful look into business marketing, which he cranked out in what is estimated to be about 100 hours, after a previous book was rejected for apparently not being commercial enough.
Music and lyrics are by Frank Loesser (he and Burrows make up the team that gave theater patrons “Guys and Dolls”). The show opened on Broadway in 1961 and initially for more than 1,400 performances. It won seven Tony Awards and the 1962 Pulitzer Prize for drama.
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The show is directed by Grand Theatre Company owners Tanny and Kimberlee Nanda. This is the fifth play they will have directed for the school, where the two were also once students and actors themselves.
They describe the musical as “a bouncy, clever score, and bunch of comically offbeat characters.” Cast list includes Eldon Oswald as J. Pierrepont Finch, Hannah Heckerson as Rosemary Pilkington, Tyler Orr as J. B. Biggley, Rory Mulligan as Bud Frump, Shelby Mitchell as Hedy LaRue, Suzannah Mikol as Smitty, Bailey Robert as Mrs. Krumholtz, Noah as Benjamin Bratt, Heidi Guenther as Ms. Jones, Zack Thorpe as Twimble, and ensemble members Alanah Rempel, Caitlyn Taylor, Eliza Glavin, Marina and Ariana. Many of the young talents starred in the successful spring production “Cyrano de Bergerac” at MPHS and are participants of the Grand Theatre Company’s open stage program, which recently featured the fall play “A Twilight Evening: Stories from The Twilight Zone.”
Tanny said he and Kimberlee are very proud of all their work, and that there will be singing and dancing throughout the show.
“This is a really fun and upbeat musical with a great ensemble cast,” he said.