‘Singin’ in the Rain, Jr.’ taps onto stage

Ian Hanson, left, and Ryan Musil tap dance in a scene from “Singin’ in the Rain, Jr.” during a Sunday, March 12, practice at New Prague Middle School. The middle school’s spring musical opens at 7:30 p.m. this Friday, March 17. To see more photos click on the Blue Button. (Patrick Fisher Photo)

New Prague Middle School oepns its spring musical this Friday, March 17, with a rendition of a classic as the young actors and dancers perform “Singin’ in the Rain, Jr.” The show is at the middle school auditorium, 721 Central Ave. N, with showtimes of 7:30 p.m. March 17, 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 18, and continues the following weekend at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 24, and 1 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25.

Middle school choir teacher Nicole Thietje, who is directing the show, said there are 93 students in grades sixth through eighth from the middle school and St. Wenceslaus School who are helping on and off stage. “‘Singin' in the Rain Jr.’ is set in the Golden Age of Hollywood when films are transitioning from silent to ‘talkies,’” said Thietje. Helping her have been a number of parents, plus Rebecca Rosemeier is head of costumes, Elise Lundeen is running lights and Dan Cross has been working on the technical aspects of the musical.

In the storyline, silent movie stars Don Lockwood and Lina Lamont are a hot item, at least in the Tinseltown tabloids, but behind the scenes, things aren't always as they appear on the big screen. Meanwhile, Lina's squeaky voice might be the end of her career in "talking pictures" without the help of a talented young actress to do the talking and singing for her. Helping Don through the show is best friend Cosmo Brown and new friend Kathy Selden.

Thietje noted there are two things that contrast this show from past ones. “This show has been different because our leads are all students who have not had leads before,” she said about the first item. Leading the cast are Ian Hanson as Don Lockwood, Abbi Pexa as Kathy Selden, Ryan Musil as Cosmo Brown and Mandi Becher as Lina Lamont. The cast also includes....

To see more on this story pick up the March 16, 2017 print edition of The New Prague Times.