Garibaldi Secondary School is going to be transformed into a bumping 50s hangout in a couple of weeks as students prepare to put on their best performance of lovestruck teenagers in the new production of Grease.
Sharmila Miller, artistic director for the Garibaldi Secondary Interdisciplinary Arts Academy, said that the decision to do the hit musical Grease was not something that came from her, but rather a vote by the students.
“The choice of Grease for this year’s musical came from the senior students who were ‘hopelessly devoted’ to performing this classic show about a group of rambunctious teenagers who navigate crushes, conflicts, and coming back together within the dynamics of high school culture in the late 1950s,” said Miller in a statement.
Miller was happy with the students’ decision, explaining that Grease has a lot of good messages in it for both the kids and the audience.
“I believe there is an opportunity to highlight the message of not being afraid to be who you are, to be present and wholeheartedly authentic in any relationship, and, consequently, to inspire others around you to do, and be, the same.”
This is the third time that the school has put on a production of Grease, with the last one taking place in 2016, and is only the fourth show being performed under the direction of Miller as artistic director.
Another crew member fairly new to her role is English and drama teacher Whitney Mullens, who is in charge of choreographing this production.
Although Mullens has been teaching high school dance for 16 years, this is the first musical she has choreographed, which is a challenge she has been excited to tackle.
“Many cast members have choreographed their own creations for the ‘Hand Jive’ number,” explained Mullens.
Students Jay Tulip and Beckham Mork are playing the male lead of Danny Zuko, who is the leader of the Greasers.
The female lead role of Sandy Dumbrowski, a new member of the Pink Ladies, will be played by Taylor Crowdis and Angelika Alincastre.
Following last year’s production of Legally Blonde, this is only the second production the school has put on since the start of the pandemic.
Miller is excited to get the kids back on the stage in a more normal environment where they can fully demonstrate to the audience the skills they’ve learned.
“While 2021’s production of Legally Blonde had limited seats available, this year’s production has the ability to fill the theatre to capacity,” said Miller.
Garibaldi Secondary’s production of Grease will run from Nov. 29 to Dec. 9, with tickets costing $18 per person.
Each show will start at 7:30 p.m., with doors opening at 7 p.m. Tickets are available at https://www.vtixonline.com/.
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