Theater is a full contact sport. It demands much and unsparingly. And musical theater … even more so.
When the performers are 18 years old and younger, theater becomes a miracle unfolding. Properly led, musical theater becomes about improving individual talent and bringing about community in a way that is both compassionately demanded and delicately balanced.
That’s because it develops empathy, inspires excellence and requires commitments of physical stamina.
At the same time, it encourages individuality, balances personal striving with group needs and hones talent, skills and technique especially in dancing, singing, comedy, improv, presence, and acting.
This is exactly what CYT’s group of young performers – led by an amazing directing team – deliver.
Because of all that is required, youth theater is often either a great performance or a personal growth experience. Too often, it is not both.
Not so for CYT’s Music Man Jr.
It is pure magic – a winning combination of youthful talent, individual excellence and a troupe that clearly has gained much in supporting each other. The performance shines under the guidance of a superb directing team.
For those unfamiliar with the tale, Music Man Jr. is a classic redemption story.
In a nutshell … Harold Hill, a fast-talking traveling salesman arrives in River City, Iowa, to see if he can persuade the uptight town to fall prey to his latest money-making adventure – starting a youth marching band. He convinces locals that the new pool table is nothing but trouble, and the only way to save their children is by purchasing uniforms and instruments so they can join his band. The catch? He doesn’t know a trombone from a treble clef, and plans to flee with the cash. His scheme is threatened when the beautiful Marian, the town’s piano teacher, sees through his lies to the man he is inside and forces him to face a difficult decision about skipping town and ditching the very kids who have come to depend on him for one of the rarest commodities out there – hope.
CYT, with its amazing directing team of Ben Olson (Lead Director), Jeanne Olsen (Assistant Director), Melissa Gorr (Vocal Director), Rachel Iler (Choreographer) and Angela Corn (Production Coordinator), put together an incredible performance marrying excellence and an engaging community dynamic.
Performances are near Kenosha, Wisconsin on November 2nd – 4th at:
Wilmot High School PAC
11112 308th Avenue,
Wilmot, WI 53192.
CYT is an organization that develops character and creativity in kids of all ages through quality theater arts training that brings families and communities together while reflecting its commitment to living Christian principles.
CYT Chicago is entering its 22nd year as the Midwest’s largest children’s theater organization serving over 6,000 students annually in 10 counties across Northern IL and Southeastern WI.
Music Man, Jr. has a talented cast of Leading Roles played by: Nathan Walla, Brianna Fisher, Sarah Graham, Cayden Corn, Cayden Loveless, Kevin Hessenthaler, Emma Schlagenhaft, Mia Olsen, and Samara Gorman, joined by Eleanor Cooley, Viktor Lemke, Kye Rieckhoff, Brian Gonzales, and Grace Henningfield.
Various musical and dance numbers are performed by: SCHOOL BOARD/QUARTET: Grant Noble, Richard Baxter Brown, Cameron Corn and Elijah Roanhaus. PICK-A-LITTLE LADIES: Alivia Smith, Katie Sullivan, Carly Mikula, Mariana Moore, Sophia Schmidt, Marie Tyree, Karenna Schick, Lauren Cox, Caitlin Cannon. JUNIOR PICK-A-LITTLES: Samara Gorman, Callie Hubing, Cali Loveless. TRAVELING SALESMEN/NEWSPAPERMEN: Seth Olsen, Cameron Corn, Grant Noble, Elijah Roanhaus, Richard Baxter Brown, Viktor Lemke, AJ Grigg, Brian Gonzales, Corbin Palmer. FEATURED TEEN DANCERS: Esther Brown, Emma Bruce, Julia Bruce, Kate Goodwill, AJ Grigg, Ariana Hubing, Madeline Moore, Rebecca Walla and Grace Wienke. FEATURED KID DANCERS: Caedmon Brown, Corinne Cannon, Samara Gorman, Lylah Grigg, Katie Highley, Cali Loveless and Ariana Sarenac. WELLS FARGO SOLOISTS: Kevin Hessenthaler, Grace Henningfield, Viktor Lemke, Seth Olsen, Marie Tyree, Carly Mikula, Alivia Smith, Cayden Loveless, Madeline Moore, Sarah Graham and Esther Brown. WELLS FARGO DRIVER –AJ Grigg. IOWA STUBBORN SOLOISTS: Richard Baxter Brown, Carly Mikula and Elijah Roanhaus. WAN TAN YE GIRLS/FLAG GIRLS: Anna Charbonneau, Meadow Clouse, Lauren Dahlberg, Katherine Egan, Anna Estell, Lylah Grigg, Evelyn Oldham, Olivia Peter, Laney Pumala, Heidi Rathmann, Ariana Sarenac, Sidney Stried and Lily Troyer. RIVER CITY BAND: Caedmon Brown, Colton Brydun, Claire Cannon, Corrine Cannon, Molly Granahan, AJ Grigg, Katie Highley, Grace Lasch, Naomi Little, Corbin Palmer, Mary Catherine Slagle, Evangelina Stuebner, and Rebecca Susmilch. WOMEN’S SOCIAL COMMITTEE: Sarah Dunlap, Grace Henningfield, Sarah Jung, Maria Lemke, Bailey Millimaki, Rachel Schmitt and Meredith Sullivan.
This production is not to be missed. Support the youth. The importance of the arts to and for youth cannot be overstated.
For tickets and info., go to: https://www.cytchicago.org/shows/The-Music-Man-Jr/11
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