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Upper School Musical Mary Poppins Takes Flight With Four Unforgettable Shows
The talented cast of 30 Upper School students, assisted by a hard-working technical crew and costume team, pulled off an incredibly choreographed production.
The Upper School Musical Mary Poppins thrilled audience members in four performances last week in the Hurlbut Theater.
The talented cast of 30 Upper School students, assisted by a hard-working technical crew and costume team pulled off an incredibly choreographed production. The amount of set pieces, large musical numbers, projections and special effects made for an exciting show throughout.
The orchestra played throughout the 2 ½-hour performances, delighting audience members with recognizable hits such as “Practically Perfect,” “Jolly Holiday”, “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” “Let’s Go Fly a Kite”, “Step in Time,” and “A Spoonful of Sugar.”
Special effects included lots of magic, since Mary arrives on the wind and adds jollity to Jane and Michael’s lives as their nanny. With help from a flight director and four tech crew members backstage, the characters of Mary, Bert, Neleus, and Miss Andrew all took flight at times during the performance. Other special effects included a disappearing bird, fog, and a seemingly bottomless carpet bag.
Technical Director and Resident Designer Gordon Richins praised the demanding work done by stage manager Jordan Reder. Her role included calling the cues which requires a great deal of focus. He compared her role to that of being a controller at an airport. Similarly, Mr. Richins was impressed by Gavin Shams who worked an assistant flight director. Shams, along with alum Spencer Keane and Production Assistant Justice Musick-Corson moved the actors up and down in the air, while the flight director moved them left and right. Assistant stage manager Justin Dai was a leader for the backstage crew. “It’s hard,” Mr. Richins said. “You think the set pieces just move, but they don’t. This show was very demanding and the crew did not get a break.”
Upper School students and cast members Sammy Kushner and Tessa Maryott served as assistant choreographers under the direction of choreographer Carly Taberski. The pit musicians, led by Music Director Lex Leigh, included MS and US students Kenji Kothari, Brendan Lyons, Daniel Lyons, Rian Xie, and Gloria Zhou, and faculty Chris Carbajal.
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