Students ready to ‘cut loose’ for latest spring musical

From March 21 to the 23, CRHS students will showcase their talents during the latest spring musical

By KRYSTAL NURSE

The Sun

This year’s spring musical is bringing all kinds of excitement for students and directors alike as they’re ready to present their rendition of the 1984 musical drama “Footloose” at Clearview Regional High School.

From January until late March, over 20 students from the middle school and high school rehearsed their lines, songs and dances for the March 21 through 23 performances with the directors.

Photos: Clearview Regional ‘Footloose’ rehearsal

“What really excites me about ‘Footloose’ this year is that a lot of people think that ‘Footloose’ is just a clumsy, silly show, but aside from the dancing, there’s a lot of depth [in the story] and depth in the characters, and there’s some powerful meanings and scenes that are show-stoppers,” said junior Ben Taylor, who plays the lead role of Ren McCormack.

“We have this music bootcamp the first week and the kids knocked out so much music,” said Romel McInnis, CRSD’s choir director who is directing the musical’s score with pianist Diana Gable. “As a directing staff, we were surprised. We’ve been incredibly proud of the kids and now, it’s getting them to sing and dance at the same time.”

Leading up to the rehearsals, senior Hannah Specht, who plays Ariel Moore (character is double-cast with Logan DiVerniero), said they had to not only act and do improv, but had to sing and have dance numbers to show their capabilities.

“With the singing and dancing, we do a lot of practicing with how to make our stomachs strong because you use your gut and we do practice with that,” said senior Madison Mills, who plays Rusty with Kathryn Lee. “We were joking with each other about how we need to work out because we need to be able to have that energy.”

The songs included in the school’s musicals include the classics of “Footloose” and “Holding out for a Hero” with some cast favorites of “Mama Says,” “Heaven Help” and “Can You Find it in Your Heart?” The musical will also include a live band that will be on-stage in the background.

“Even though ‘Holding Out for a Hero’ isn’t my song, I think it’s the best because the dance is killer and it’s such a good girl number,” said Lee. “We get our chance to own the stage even though this show is mostly about Ren, so I love it.”

McInnis and Gable added seeing what the students have been capable of has made the theme of “Footloose” resonate well with them. They hope the crowd will walk away thinking the students are in a professional musical theater.

“If you want to come see what your local kids are really doing and what teenagers are capable of and want to show your love and support for them, come out,” said Gable.

Tickets are available online at www.ClearviewRegional.edu and the night of, cash only. Admission is $15 for adults and $12 for students and senior citizens. Showings are March 21 and 22 at 7:30 p.m. and March 23 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

“It’s not like one of those musicals where it’s funny and has good dancing,” said DiVerniero. “It has a lot of heart in it. The characters are three-dimensional and complex and not just like some other shows.”

“There are people that are funny, ones that you love to hate, ones that you hate to love, and it’s such a wide-ranging show that anyone could get something out of it,” said Specht.