NEW GLASGOW – The stage at North Nova Education Centre has been transformed into the castle from Beauty and the Beast as the students prepare for the big show next week.
North Nova Education Centre’s production of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast will take the stage next week and the students say they’ve been rehearsing 50 hours a week lately in preparation for opening night.
“We have 45 students in cast, 17 in orchestra, 12 in tech and stage crew plus seven makeup artists and five that help with painting plus a leadership class will be ushering,” Music Director Janice Alcorn said.
The 50 hours a week the students are devoting to rehearsals is on top of their existing studies and other activities, but the cast said it’s worth it, because “it’s fun,” principal actor Alex Halliday said.
Halliday, who plays the Beast, said he decided to audition for this year’s musical after acting in NNEC’s musical last year, Les Misèrables.
“I really enjoyed it last year,” he said.
Ryan Myers, who is playing the part of Lumière, said he auditioned for the musical after watching from behind the scenes last year.
“Last year I was in the stage crew,” he said. “When it was happening, I thought it’d be cool to be out there.”
Alcorn said typically the school chooses musicals because it’s part of the school’s culture.
“Tradition is part of it and the interest of teachers involved and the students, they come as see the show when they’re younger and take part when they’re in grade ten,” she said, then turning to the cast. “What would you guys say if we ever said ‘there’s not going be a musical for a few years,’ she asked. “It’d be pretty sad,” Halliday replied.
“It’s just part of the culture of the school,” Alcorn said.
She said they chose Beauty and the Beast as the school musical this year because they wanted a happier play following last year’s production of Les Misèrables.
“The last show was sad and so we wanted to do something bright. Our wonderful costume ladies… they were tired of making drab costumes. They wanted something fun to make so we gave it to them full force. They’re having fun, but oh my, what work,” she said. “It’s the Broadway production of it so it’s the same as the movie, with some additional numbers.”
Moriah MacLeod, who is playing the lead part of Belle, said with opening night just around the corner, she’s excited to perform for a live audience.
Opening night is Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m. with performances on March 1 and March 2 at 7:30 p.m. and a matinee performance on March 3 at 2:30. Performances will take place in the theatre room at NNEC. Tickets are $12 for students and seniors, $15 for adults and are available at the school by calling 902-755-8180 ext. 0.
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