Read all about it! Theater for Young Audiences (TYA) kicks off its 30th anniversary season with an ambitious production of Disney’s critically acclaimed and wildly popular “Newsies the Musical”.
More than 130 people are involved in staging this complicated and layered endeavor which requires strong vocals and involved dance choreography. The curtain opens on Friday, Jan. 11 and runs through Jan. 20.
The full-length, fully-staged musical features a live orchestra and overflowing, accomplished cast of 53, among the largest in TYA history. Many of the cast members have played principal roles in other productions.
Set in New York City at the turn of the 20th century and inspired by the real-life Newsboy Strike of 1899, “Newsies” is a rousing story of Jack Kelly, a charismatic newsboy and leader of a ragged band of young “news-ies.” Together, they dream of a better life far from the hardship of the streets.
When publishing titans raise distribution prices at the expense of the kids delivering papers, Jack rallies the troops from across the city to retaliate. With help from the strong and feisty female reporter Katherine Plummer, all of New York City soon recognizes the power youth possess to make a difference.
TYA’s artistic director Hannah Benton is producing the show, having assembled the gifted team of Laurie Dillman, stage director, Paul Sucherman, music director, Katie Hammer, choreographer, Rachel Altman, stage manager, Eric Rautmann, sound designer, Michelle Jorgensen, set designer, Lori Bray-Levinsohn, costume designer, and Lisa Stewart, lighting designer.
“Newsies the Musical” is being performed at the UW-Sheboygan Fine Arts Theatre with 7 pm shows on Jan. 11-12 and Jan. 18-19, with 2 pm matinees on Jan. 13 and 20. Tickets may be purchased online at www.tyasheboygan.org and the show is recommended for those at least five years old.
The talented cast features actors with a long list of credits as well as those making their TYA stage debuts. Playing the top roles of Jack Kelly, Katherine Plummer, and Davey Jacobs are David Colton , Hilary Mayer, and Timothy Peterson respectively.
Other principals include Grant Cassady, Charlize Kuznacic, Ian Zempel, Harrison Thiry, Benjamin DeTroye, Nathan Leclerc, Luke Gotwald, Max Krueger, Evan Vorpahl, Abigail Charbonneau, Lucy Thoresen, Lukas Reshke, Kailey Kaltenbrun, Kurt Zempel, Danielle Rammer, Erik Neave, Marc Theune, Katy Ries, Josh Joyce, Ethan Barajas, Nathan Werth, and Charlie Heim.
Rounding out the ensemble are Brady Baker, Sophia Laudloff, Chloe Laudloff, Noah Verhasselt, Isaac Wieland, Meg Thiry, Abby Wetzel, Cecelia Szyman, Bailey Joyce, Elizabeth Kaufmann, Davis Knowles, Camille Staats, Veronica Lampe, Florence Butterfield, Naomi Harder, Evangeline Joyce, Lily Werth, Lillian Justice, Jennifer Plier, Anya Mentch, Nadia Fears, Laura Leclerc, Maria Jensen, Elizabeth Cassity, Owen Denson, Micah Lilyquist, and Brooke Hess.
Since its inception, TYA has impacted nearly 2,000 students in Sheboygan County grade, middle, and high schools as well as countless adults. At TYA, students often share the stage with adults (as in “Newsies”), but also have the opportunity to actually produce theater, managing all aspects of a show.