North Bay high school students to perform first production since pandemic began
NORTH BAY -- In an attempt to keep musical theatre alive in North Bay, West Ferris Intermediate Secondary school students are producing a Broadway show that will be presented in the coming weeks.
It's the first show the students have performed since the COVID-19 pandemic began last year.
The show is called 'Pippin.' It's the tale of a young prince who longs for passion and adventure in life. The production is a revival of the award-winning 1972 musical starring Ben Vereen. The play features dance, music and magic by a company of clowns who are performing Pippin’s story.
“We had a phenomenal group of young musical theatre students who were chomping at the bit to get back on stage,” said director Allan MacAskill.
Due to the province-wide stay-at-home order, there is no audience allowed to view the show in person. However, it was pre-recorded to livestream online from April 8-10 and again from April 15-17.
“We were fortunate to have Darren Summersby, a returning Arts Nipissing student that recently graduated from Sheridan College, who offered his expertise in filming and editing the show," said MacAskill.
Show was double-cast
To add to the students’ learning, the production was double-cast, which allowed the students to have two different versions of the same production.
“I’m super excited to do something normal this year,” said student Ian McCormack, who is playing the lead role. “I’ve done lots of musicals over the years since Grade 4, and I thought there was no way it would happen this year, but I’m really, really glad it did.”
The production was rehearsed over four weeks and then filmed in the final week of the musical theatre course. Students were introduced to the differences between a live production and a staged film.
“After not singing like I used to for months, it was challenging to sing again in front of my class. But I was finally able to be more confident,” said student Megan Byrne, who plays the character Catherine. "I hope people enjoy just being able to watch theatre again."
Tickets are $18 per household. This allows the entire family to pay one fee to view the show together.
Tickets can be purchased through an online streaming company here.