Theatre: MPHS staged production of ‘Hello, Dolly!’ | SkyHiNews.com
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Theatre: MPHS staged production of ‘Hello, Dolly!’

by Cyndi Palmer
Sky-Hi Daily News
Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News
ALL | Sky-Hi Daily News

The Middle Park High School drama team, made up of about 40 young adults in the cast and crew, presents the classic musical play “Hello, Dolly!” starting Thursday, Nov. 8.

“Hello, Dolly!” is the story of the lively and lovable character, Mrs. Dolly Levi, and her efforts to marry a well-known “half-a-millionaire” Horace Vandergelder. But the money’s not for her alone. She wants to circulate Vandergelder’s riches among the people the way her late husband Ephraim Levi taught her.

“Money, pardon the expression, is like manure,” Levi says in the play. “It’s not worth a thing unless it’s spread around, encouraging young things to grow.”

Along the way, she succeeds in matching up several couples: Widow Molloy with Vandergelder’s head clerk, Cornelius Hackl; Cornelius’ assistant Barnaby Tucker with Mrs. Molloy’s assistant, Minnie Fay; and Ambrose Kemper, a struggling artist, with Vandergelder’s niece, Ermengarde.

Dolly leads audiences to Yonkers, where she follows Vandergelder to his hay and feed store, then by train back to her hat shop in New York, out into the city streets where everyone is caught up in the great Fourteenth Street Association Parade, and finally to an upscale restaurant where the famous song “Hello, Dolly!” is sung.

The play takes audiences back to the late 1800s and is full of extravagant costumes.

The score is filled with uplifting songs and lyrics. Classic musical numbers include “Put On Your Sunday Clothes,” “Ribbons Down My Back,” “Before the Parade Passes By,” “Elegance,” “It Only Takes a Moment” and “So Long, Dearie.”

This is the third show under the direction of Grand Theatre Company owners Kimberlee and Tanny Nanda, who once graced the same stage as students.

“We want to give the kids a look at the diverse styles of theatre out there,” Tanny said. “We started with ‘Into the Woods’ (last fall) because it is one of the hardest shows you can do in a high-school level. The music is difficult and the characters and themes are dark. It was a real stretch for the kids but they stepped up to the challenge. Next, we did ‘Bye Bye Birdie’ because it was a different era and filled with fun music. We used a live band consisting of some of the students from MPHS. It was a rock concert.

“Now we want to tackle a more classical musical in ‘Hello, Dolly!’ They have to try to capture an era that had a completely different set of rules about manners, courtship and societal roles,” he said.

Those to be featured in the spotlight include: Jennifer Kerber as Dolly Levi, J.P. Lacouture as Horace Vandergelder, Hannah Heckerson as Irene Malloy, Suzannah Mikol at Minnie Fay, Eldon Oswald as Cornelius Hackl, Rory Mulligan as Barnaby Tucker, Tyler Orr as Ambrose Kemper, Lauren Atzman as Ermingarde, Heidi Guenther as Ernestia Money, Shelby Mitchell as Mrs. Rose and part of the chorus, Zack Thorp as Rudolph and part of the chorus, and David Diamond as the judge and part of the chorus. Other members lending their talents to the chorus are Wendy Ready, Danielle Salberg, Emily Huse, Alanah Rempel, Josh Van Netta, Ashley Carland, Shelby Brueske, Elisa Glavin, Sean Kerber, and Simon Nicol.

Does Dolly get her man?

Come find out and support the Middle Park High School drama team.

Shows are at 7 p.m. and run Thursday, Nov. 8 through Saturday, Nov. 10 in the high school auditorium.


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