The coffee’s gone. That’s enough to catapult the office into panic. Twenty Whitefish High School actors lament the woes of running out of coffee in their upcoming musical “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.”
“We wanted a big fun musical to showcase the new stage,” says Director and Drama Club Coach Leslie Thomas. The play scheduled to run the first weekend in November will be the first full show in the new Whitefish Middle School performing arts center. Those who attended the gala opening got a taste of the Pulitzer prize-winning play.
“How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” is based on a book written by Abe Burrows, Jack Weinstock and Willie Gilbert with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser—two of “Guys and Dolls” fame. Much like scenes on NBC’s hit comedy “The Office,” the story parodies classic office characters like the company man, the nepotistic nephew, and backstabbing co-workers jockeying for position on the corporate ladder. The satire of big business nails themes of ambition and greed, and of course love, amid a score of snappy songs that make you want to sing along. “It’s a good, timeless fun story with fun characters,” says Thomas. “While it’s not a kiddie show, it’s great for families with songs people might recognize.”
Set in the 1960s, polyester dresses are the rage. “I’ve been shopping online for two months buying vintage polyester clothes,” notes Thomas. With 20 kids in the cast, that’s a feat.
“We were looking for a large musical to bring kids back into drama program,” says Thomas. In addition to the large cast, a stage and technical crew of five run the backstage. Led by high school band instructor Mark McCrady, four students and four adults form the show’s orchestra.
The show hits the stage for three performances Nov. 1-3 at 7:30 p.m. Tickets ($10 adults, $8 students) are sold at the door. The high school art department will also feature a gallery show of student work in the lobby.
Thomas sums up, “It’s exciting to be the first real show in the brand new auditorium.”
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