BEAR RIVER HIGH SCHOOL – By Cari Doutre – Feb. 14, 2020
It’s a message of kindness that student actors will be portraying on stage, but the message goes beyond the stage. In this month’s Bear River High Theatre Department’s production of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella,” the message is clear, and the magic is obvious for audience members no matter the age.
“Cinderella has been such a fun show to direct,” said Bear River High’s theatre department director Derek Sorensen. “The message it shares is a message of kindness and the kids involved have really stepped it up and taken that message into their lives.”
Paige Petersen will play the main role as Ella with sophomore Maverick Christensen playing Topher, the “Prince Charming” of Ella’s life.
Senior Mattie Mecham will take on the role of Marie (or the “Fairy Godmother” as she’s often portrayed).
“It is my dream role,” Mecham said about being casted as Marie. “I had to break out of my type cast box to get it and so I worked really hard over the summer and I knew I had to fight for it.”
“It’s one of my favorite roles I’ve ever done on stage,” she added. “It’s such a key role but it’s not the one that everybody is expecting.”
Those surprises Mecham teases are part of the promotion of “Cinderella.” Along with the classic tale, “Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Cinderella” is the new Broadway adaption of the classical musical.” The theatre department promises “some new characters and surprising twists.”
“This play is filled with magic and surprises and tons of fun songs and tons of way to keep the audience involved throughout the whole thing,” said Mecham.
“I like the light heartedness of it. It’s so funny and there’s a great way to keep the whole audience involved. Nobody takes themselves too seriously and everyone is always having fun,” she added.
Sami Pehrson is cast as Madame with Dillon Stewart as Sebastian. Olivia Rose landed the role of Gabrielle and Tanner Corbridge will star as Jean-Michel. Molli Jones is Charlotte in the production and Damon Fuhriman is Lord Pinkleton.
Molli Hepworth will play two roles as the Racoon Puppeteer/Coachman and Tucker Porter will also play duo roles as the Fox Puppeteer/Footman.
There will also be featured solos from Savana Marble, Nancy Smith, Halli Hepworth, Kali Hyer, Sarah Wilde, Rachel Tillotson, Kalia Thompson, Shannon Epling, Olivia Bailey and Maci Roberts.
The entire ensemble cast of 41 additional young actors will also get plenty of stage time. The performance also advertises a special appearance by Pinkleton’s Pageboy played by Ethan Allen.
“I’ve never had such a blast directing a show and it has everything to do with the attitude of the kids. They have worked so hard and we want everyone to come see it again and again. We hope to pack the house multiple times this year!” Sorensen said.
“Cinderella” will be performed Feb. 20, 21, 22, and 24 at 7 p.m. with a matinee on Saturday, Feb. 22 at 2 p.m. at the Bear River High School auditorium.
Running time is two hours and 15 minutes, including one intermission.
Tickets are $5 for youth and $10 for adults and can be purchased online here:
Photos are courtesy of the Bear River High School Theatre Department.