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East students perform ‘Mean Girls’

High-school comedy is musical based on film of the same name

Special to The Sun
Students at Cherry Hill East perform “Mean Girls”, a vocally challenging show about a high school transfer student Cady Heron as she navigates public high school for the first time.

Cherry Hill East students recently gave their opening performance of the musical “Mean Girls,” based on the popular 2004 movie by the same name.

“Almost 20 years since its initial release, ‘Mean Girls’ remains a relevant, irreverent and honest look at navigating high school,” said East theater director Peter Gambino. “The musical is a faithful adaptation of the film and features a large, female-driven ensemble and a track listing of catchy music.

“East students couldn’t be more excited to perform this massive show for our community.”

The story follows student Cady Heron – who grew up on an African savanna – as she navigates life in a new high school. The transfer student is quickly noticed by the most popular girls in school, a group called The Plastics.

“It mostly teaches that judging others won’t make you better than anyone else,” explained Lily Tewsik, a senior who plays Regina George ” … You learn by the end that everyone is unique in their own way. It doesn’t have to be a problem, it doesn’t have to be wrong. You can just all learn together.”

The cast has learned to deliver comedic lines and they note that the movie “Mean Girls” being turned into a musical has made for some interesting aspects.

“In preparing for my character, it was a lot of practicing my lines and scenes in different ways and … in front of an audience to see how people will react to your line delivery,” noted senior Natalie Borowsky, who plays one of the mean girls, Karen Smith.

Aviv Haroz, a senior playing Damien Hubbard, one of Cady’s friends, shared his take on preparing for the role.

“There are so many fans and so many beloved characters,” he said. “It’s really important to stay true to the characters in the original film, so making sure we’re maintaining the integrity of the characters and adding a twist to it (was one of the challenges).”

Tewsik noted that she had always been a fan of the film and was excited to perform in it.

“I’ve loved ‘Mean Girls’ for years,” she recalled. “I was a huge fan of the movie and the original Broadway cast script, so when I read the script, I was so happy and so excited for it.”

She’s also happy to be making others laugh.

According to the show’s vocal director, Heather Lockart, “Mean Girls” is a vocally challenging show.

“The vocal requirement for all of the lead characters is that they have the ability to have a pretty high belt and a big range, and to sing at more of a level of a Broadway star than a high-school student, because that’s what this show requires,” she pointed out …

“It’s vocally very, very demanding.”

“We hope that it not only gets audience members reminiscing about their own teen years,” Gambino stated, “but that it also presents a candid depiction of what many of our youth experience each day.”

Performances will continue on Friday, March 8, and Saturday, March, 9, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 10, at 2 p.m. Tickets will be sold both online and in person, and more information about the show can be found at https://www.showtix4u.com/event-details/79740.

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