High School Musical Auditions

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Mibu Tako

After a quiet year of having no school productions, rehearsals for the long-awaited musical have finally begun. This year’s play is from one of the most popular and famous movies, High School Musical!

How has the pandemic impacted the production of the school musical? How do the cast members feel after their auditions?

Students who were casted as the leading roles as well as the head of Performing Arts Ms Szymczak were interviewed, in order to find out more about the upcoming performance.

To begin with, Ms Szymczak noted that she chose High School Musical as this year’s school play, “because we didn’t have a school production last year.” She further explains, “I thought it was really important that we do a production that was popular as well as familiar because when we did Urine Town, nobody was familiar with it. I also wanted a production that could have a very big cast. This year we did have auditions, but everyone who auditioned, is in the show. I feel after the pandemic, that is exactly what we need.”

Despite the large number of casts, Anais Py in grade 10 and Stacey Choi in grade 11 won the opportunity to show off their amazing acting skills as the two protagonists: Troy Bolton and Gabriella Montez. Anais states that she “wasn’t really sure if she wanted to audition at first,” but with her friends’ encouragement, she decided to try out last minute. Stacey explains that she loves singing, and she decided to audition for Gabriella because she was the leading role with a number of vocal parts.

Laiza Cuenda, a grade 11 student enacting the sassy antagonist; Sharpey Evans, excitedly told us that the audience should most look forward to the excellent vocal abilities of the cast members and the upbeat songs. This is Laiza’s first time to take part in the school play as an actor and not as a backstage member, since she joined Marymount. “High school musical is my favourite play, and I have always been into Sharpey’s character. I figured, since this is my last year participating in school productions, I thought it’d be better to come out of my comfort zone, and play a fun role.”

Catarina Reis Messa in grade 11 shares similar feelings with Laiza. “I participated in the musical production in 2019-2020 and I had the best time. Everyone is so talented, and I had so much fun from the auditions to the final performance. I couldn’t wait to come back, and since last year the production was cancelled because of Covid, I couldn’t miss the opportunity. I also knew this would be my last chance to take part in it, so I really wanted to participate.” Catarina is performing as Chad Danforth, Troy’s best friend and teammate in the basketball team Wildcats.

Another key character in High School Musical is Taylor Mccasey, the president of the science club. Lucy Daly in grade 11 is enacting Taylor in the play. “It’s a role that I’ve never played before since she’s really sassy and smart, and I thought it would be really cool to try,” she explains.

In response to the question “What should the audience most look forward to?”, all interviewees mentioned the song and dance numbers. “I think many people know the songs and people would be most excited to see them on stage,” Lucy states. Stacey also indicates how everyone can dance along with the familiar songs, which would make the show even more enjoyable.

Nonetheless, this year’s High school Musical is not just about the singing and dancing. Another interesting aspect of this show is that there will be a “school built inside a school”! The big stage in the Auditorium will display the classrooms in East High School in High School Musical.

Catarina claims that the audience should look forward to “everything.” “From the songs, the costumes, the acting, the orchestra, everything! The whole production is very professional and I’m sure that everyone will have a great time, especially those who grew up watching these characters on TV, like me. The audience has definitely loads to look forward to, and I promise we won’t disappoint.”

The title line of this musical: “We’re All in This Together” signifies how our school community reunited and are all back together after the unprecedented times of the pandemic. Who’s ready for the “Fantastic and really interesting characters, great set and costume designs, but overall, the great live performance with a focus on collaboration and community (Ms Szymczak)”??!!