Drama Students Find Their Stride


Slater Charnley, A&E Reporter, Theater Member

Shrek the Musical was quite the production with a long rocky start; it ended up finally coming together though the last few weeks. With many bumps in the road, we made it and pulled together a good few shows. From the orchestra dropping out, the cast experiencing more than a few changes.
Some words from our leads show the energy just before opening night.
Jordyn Gonsalves the beautiful Princess Fiona said, “Personally I think it will come together in the end even with all the last-minute changes. I’m very excited to do my first musical lead and think it’s a great way to end my Highschool theatre career, going out with a bang.”
Sophia Myers, the hilarious Shrek, said, “[I] cannot wait for the show. I am so ready to see all my hard work pay off.”
Our crew and cast over the last few months have been working vigorously for this production and over time have gotten to know one another.
With some kind words from Farquaad played by Jenny Ballutay, “I believe the show’s coming together and there’s no one I’d rather do it with.”
The first few weeks were slow with rehearsals being often but unproductive and most not able to learn very effectively. Many people were missing at first, leaving cues being void or a nonexistent tech team, or a janky musical setup around the piano. As we fell behind with production time, we had to implement a second tech week where a few individuals had to put in double-time to paint the panels the tech had left.
But as we headed towards opening night, we made significant improvements. Our songs filling in and the leads voices really starting to come through, the solos began taking shape.
“I’m very excited for the show ready to see this character come to life,” said Lucas Childree, who played the comic companion Donkey.
Lucas Childree during Dress Rehearsal.

A cast that was stable and consistent allowing familiarity in our scenes to develop and the show to come together as a whole.
Flash forward two weeks and opening night starts. With the theatre full it was absolutely terrifying. Everyone collected their bearings and got on stage, but they found themselves in complete silence as the sound doesn’t work and are forced to sing with nothing to support them: no mics, no sound cues, and no music.
We all sigh a breath of fresh air as the music turns back on and try to get it back together to make the night as good as we can make it. We ended up throwing a great show excluding the several technical hiccups and it was quite well-received by everyone.
With the first night a little chunky but under our belts, we headed into the second showing and absolutely destroyed it with just about everything smoothed over and polished up. We ended the night with a bang of pride and confidence.
The solos stood out with piercing strong voices accompanied by perfectly timed lights. Sound, crew, and the ensemble all on point and ready for every one of their parts, truly bringing this story to life. With its lively cast of characters and bubbly story, Shrek: The Musical came out as more than a success for our Tracy High Theatre. The final two performances will be this Friday and Saturday night.