by Holy Family High School

Victoria Hesse and Cole Cribari Perhaps the most well-known musical ever known, “Oklahoma” is a valuable production for any group of students to mount. Kudos to Ms. Bobbi Wilson of Holy Family High School for introducing her group to the wonderful story and the opportunities afforded to them by being a part of the show at their school. 

In the Indian Territory now known as the state of Oklahoma; soon after the start of the 20th century, the high-spirited rivalry between the local farmers and cowboys provides the colorful backdrop for the show. Against this setting of a newly developing area, Curly, a handsome cowboy, and Laurey, a winsome farm girl, play out their love story. Though the road to true love never runs smooth, with these two headstrong romantics holding the reins, love's journey is as bumpy as a surrey ride down a country road. They will succeed in making a new life together in a brand-new state and their triumph provides the ultimate climax to “Oklahoma!”.

In the Holy Family production, the show as a whole was enjoyable. Standout performances came from Nicole Roby as Ado Annie, Victoria Hesse as Laurey, Cole Cribari as Curly and Ryan Schultz as Will. The inclusion of “It’s A Scandal, It’s An Outrage!” and “Lonely Room”, which are sometimes cut from high school productions, was good to see and offered continued insight to the characters of Ali Hakim and Jud. The choreography was most creative with the men of the cast and, though small in numbers, they were mighty in stage presence and talent and a joy to watch. Every one of them sang in tune and with confidence, and this reviewer certainly hopes they will continue acting, singing and dancing. Especially musically notable was Ryan Schultz as Will with his lovely tone. Victoria Hesse tackled the role of Laurey, singing with excellent support throughout, though her character is a challenge. The girls chorus sang with beautiful harmonies under the direction of Midge Moyer. The instrumental ensemble did an excellent job of accompanying the show, hitting the highlights of the score and balancing well. On the acting side, congratulations to Nicole Roby for her continuity of character, never once dropping, Nicole Roby and Victoria Hesse singing in character and allowing her Annie to truly shine. The “Oklahoma hello” was the flat out funniest moment in the show. Also fun to watch was Katyie Wells as Aunt Eller, who I recognized from another production I review last summer.

The dream sequence was creatively staged and quite different from the average production. A high school director who finds areas like this to make all of their students have showcase opportunities, where they can all participate, is doing something right. The audience was a bit confused by the movement of the two major set pieces switching places for the second act, while still retaining their exact look, and masking is definitely suggested to keep the backstage areas out of the audience view.

Congratulations to Holy Family’s theatre family as they surely celebrate the sell-out audiences and a great deal of fun this school year.

Performed April 16 - 19, 2008.

Tammy Franklin
National Youth Theatre

~ Cast ~

Curly: Cole Cribari
Aunt Eller: Katyie Wells*
Laurey: Victoria Hesse*
Ado Annie: Nicole Roby*
Ali Hakim: Logan Schlutz
Will Parker: Ryan Schultz*
Jud Fry: Elias Heard
Ike Skidmore: Seth Willden*
Gertie Cummings: Chelsea Murphy*
Andrew Carnes: Zach Langfield
Cord Elam: Jon Willden
Sylvie: Shanae Aerts
Virginia: Hailey St. John
Aggie: Colleen Ankarlo*
Vivian: Melanie Coletta
Ellen: Kate Dolph
Slim: Adam Cribari
Mike: James Barry
Fred: Quincy Novak

Jessen Baker, Alexandra Brown, Christine Carpenter, Kathleen Di Scipio, Emily Elliott, Angie Harder, Stacey Harward, Erin Haertig, Bianca Hernandez, Jordan Hohlfelder, Jennifer Keefe, Caitlin Knutson, Katherine Marinelli, Erika Newell, Amanda Polednik*, Ashton Preble, Maureen Quinlan*, Maggie Read*, Briana Regelin, Amy Trahan, Giovanna Wostenberg

Alexandra Brown, Christine Carpenter, Kathleen Di Scipio, Emily Elliott, Angie Harder, Stacey Harward, Ashton Preble, Amy Trahan

Pit Orchestra:
Piano: Midge Moyer
Violin: Sara Villecco*
Flute: Antonia Baker*
Bass: Paul Schmitt
Percussion: Brett Gross

Technical Staff:
Director/Choreographer: Ms. Bobbi Wilson
Music Director/Accompanist: Miss Midge Moyer
Stage Manager: Elizabeth Franz*
Set Design: Elizabeth Franz*, Ryan Schultz*, CJ Rapuano*
Lights: Alex Haserodt*, Elizabeth Carian*
Costumes: Allison Tabor*
Costume Assistants: Mrs. Brown, Mrs. Carpenter, Mrs. Knutson, Mrs. Read, Mrs. Quinlan (parents)
Props: Katie McGovern
Set Construction: CJ Rapuano*, Elizabeth Franz*, Colleen Ankarlo*, Katy Biette, Brittany Bartlett, Alex Brooks, Alex Brown, Elizabeth Carian*, Christine Carpenter, Kathleen Di Scipio, Emily Elliott, Angie Harder, Alex Haserodt*, Elias Heard, Bianca Hernandez, Jordan Hohlfelder, Katie McGovern, Katherine Marinelli, Amanda Poldnik*, Amy Trahan, Jessi Weinert*
Senic Artists: Elizabeth Franz*, Elizabeth Carian*
Dance Captain: Stacey Harward
Fight Choreography Assistant: Elias Heard

*denotes members of the National Thespian Society


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