Imagine living in a town where rock n' roll music and dancing were strictly forbidden but the youth just want to have fun.
That's the subject of the all-school musical being presented at Marietta High School this Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
"Footloose: The Musical" is based on the 1980s movie "Footloose" starring Kevin Bacon as "Ren," the new guy in school who comes from Chicago to the highly conservative Texas town and stirs things up. The movie was remade recently starring Julianne Hough as the preacher's rebellious daughter "Ariel."
Photo submitted by Scott Kitchen
Members of the cast of “Footloose: The Musical” perform during a dance number. The performances will be held at Marietta High School on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and a matinee Sunday at 2 p.m.
Taking on the popular classic was the idea of choir director Elizabeth Thacker, who is assisted by Middle School choir director J.D. Benson, Jeremy Grosklos and Brian Turrill, director of musical theater at PACE in Parkersburg.
"There were two reasons we chose this show," said Benson. "It's been a long time since MHS has done a musical and we thought this would be something the kids could relate to. We also hoped to capitalize on the recent film (remake)."
Sarah Rauch, a member of Premiere show choir, plays the role of "Vi Moore," the reverend Shaw Moore's wife.
If you go
What: 'Footloose' the musical.
Where: Marietta High School auditorium.
When: Friday and Saturday, 7 p.m.; Sunday, 2 p.m.
Cost: $5 student general admission; $10 general admission; reserved seating, $12 to 15.
"I didn't think it would be a big part because she doesn't do a lot in the movie. But in the musical she has a solo," she said.
The all-school musical was open to anyone in any grade, regardless of musical talent, according to Rauch, whose mother, Cathy, had nothing but good things to say about the production.
"I'm very much looking forward to it," she said, adding, "The kids have put many hours into rehearsing and have really gone above and beyond."
Benson, who will lead an orchestra of eight students during the performances, said he has been pleasantly surprised by the level of talent he has seen from the students, adding that there are non-choir members in the cast, as well as students who have never before been on stage.
Tackling the role of "Ren" was somewhat of a challenge for MHS junior Trace Young.
"I don't really identify with him so it was kind of a stretch," said the veteran of school plays, Mid-Ohio Valley Players' productions and member of Premiere.
"I went out for him specifically because I have never had a lead role," he said.
Young said he spends a lot of time on stage and has enjoyed working on the songs and dances.
"It's been a blast and I think the audience will be very pleasantly surprised, especially with the music and great solos," he said.
The musical will be presented Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets are $5 for students, $10 for general admission and reserved seats are available for $12 to 15.