Kutz­town HS brings to life mu­si­cal com­edy ‘Once Upon a Mat­tress’

Cast and crew pride them­selves on be­ing one big fam­ily

The Kutztown Area Patriot - - FRONT PAGE - By Brady Tucker For Digital First Me­dia

More than 50 stu­dents from Kutz­town Area School District are gear­ing up to per­form the mu­si­cal com­edy of “Once Upon a Mat­tress.”

The mu­si­cal, an adap­ta­tion from the clas­sic fairy­tale “The Princess and the Pea,” is a story about a king­dom ruled by a ter­ri­ble queen, Queen Ag­gra­vain, who makes it seem­ingly im­pos­si­ble for any­one to marry her son, Prince Daunt­less, and re­fuses to let any­one in her king­dom marry. The king­dom’s luck changes though when Winifred the Woe­be­gone en­ters into the

life of the young prince. De­ter­mined to marry the prince, Winifred does ev­ery­thing she can to pass the test of the queen.

Many new faces play a ma­jor part in this year’s mu­si­cal and are very ex­cited about this op­por­tu­nity, be­gin­ning with the di­rec­tor, Sa­man­tha Clarke.

“What ex­cites me about it is that it’s fun and it’s whim­si­cal but yet there is still a re­ally im­por­tant mes­sage about be­ing strong. Even if you’re not the typ­i­cal princess, even if you don’t typ­i­cally fit into a mold, you can still find love and ac­cep­tance.”

Clarke, new to the mu­si­cal scene at Kutz­town, thinks very highly of the stu­dents she has been able to work with.

“They are putting in a lot of hard work. There is a lot of per­son­al­ity here and it has been an ab­so­lute plea­sure just see­ing their per­son­al­i­ties come alive be­cause they have so much color and char­ac­ter in them al­ready, so it has been fun just en­cour­ag­ing them to use that nat­u­ral skill they have which is them­selves.”

Along with new faces, there are many im­por­tant mu­si­cal vet­er­ans that will also be grac­ing the stage this fall. Olivia Sica, 17, a se­nior, plays the lead role of Winifred the Woe­be­gone. Olivia has been a part of Kutz­town’s mu­si­cals since she was in sev­enth grade, and is ap­pre­cia­tive of how her ex­pe­ri­ences with the mu­si­cal has changed her.

“Just be­ing able to work with an en­sem­ble is prob­a­bly the big­gest part be­cause when you do a show you have to learn to col­lab­o­rate with other peo­ple.”

Asher Cooper, 17, a ju­nior who plays the lead role of Prince Daunt­less, was in­flu­enced early in mid­dle school to join the mu­si­cal, and has loved it ever since.

“When I was in sixth grade, Kutz­town was putting on the pro­duc­tion of ‘Hello, Dolly’, and there was this gi­ant dance scene when Dolly re­turns to her home town. It was just re­ally cool to see ev­ery­body par­tic­i­pat­ing, in­clud­ing teach­ers and kids of all ages and ev­ery­body just re­ally en­er­getic and that’s what in­spired me to join.”

The cast and crew pride them­selves on be­ing one big fam­ily, and that was es­pe­cially ex­pressed by Ju­lia Mace, 17, a se­nior who plays the Min­strel.

“Ever since my fresh­man year when I was just get­ting into it, it’s just been like a fam­ily. I have had a lot of fun with the whole cast, just act­ing and hang­ing out with these peo­ple, it’s great. We aren’t just friends within the mu­si­cal but we are friends out­side of it, too.”

Aside from the main peo­ple you see on stage, there is a lot of work be­ing put in be­hind the scenes, es­pe­cially with the stage crew. Paul Ache, a se­nior mem­ber of the stage crew, stresses the im­por­tance of a stage crew with any mu­si­cal.

“Stage crew is pretty im­por­tant be­cause they may not be seen, well, hope­fully not seen, but with­out them there wouldn’t re­ally be much of a show. Peo­ple have to work the lights, sound, and, of course, move the props. With­out them it would seem like a bunch of crazy peo­ple danc­ing for noth­ing.”

Nathan Hay­duk, 17, also a se­nior, plays the sup­port­ing role of Sir Harry. Be­ing a part of the mu­si­cal pro­duc­tions since sev­enth grade, Nathan is ex­cited to share the stage one last time with his friends.

“Since it’s my se­nior year it’s spe­cial. It’s not only the show you get to see but it’s the ex­pe­ri­ence that we have work­ing up to the show and the be­hind the scenes be­ing a part of one big fam­ily. This is what you want to leave the school with. You want it to be the best you can be and you work re­ally hard to try to get to that point.”

This year’s mu­si­cal pro­duc­tion is sure to ex­em­plify the hard work put in by each mem­ber of the cast, crew, and di­rec­tors.

Show dates for the Kutz­town Area School District’s pro­duc­tion of “Once Upon a Mat­tress” are Fri­day, Nov. 17 and Satur­day, Nov. 18 at 7:30 p.m., and on Sun­day, Nov. 19 at 2:30 p.m.


Kutz­town High School cast re­hearses “Once Upon a Mat­tress.”


Kutz­town High School cast re­hearses “Once Upon a Mat­tress.”

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