And The Show Goes On
The Old Farms Theater Company was up against some pretty big challenges this winter with its production of Into The Woods, a musical which intertwines the plots of several Brothers Grimm and Charles Perrault fairy tales, exploring the idea of what happens after happily ever after.
"Into the Woods is fairy tale musical with all of the familiar characters: Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and his beanstalk, Prince Charming, Rapunzel, and more," described Chris Bolster, Theater Program Director. "However, unlike the fairy tales you might have been told, the play doesn't end with 'happily ever after,' and the dark but ultimately hopeful second act is where the characters learn that getting your wish isn't always the end of the story."
The play featured five Avonians: junior Drew Liptrot took the lead role of the Baker, and sophomore Taylor Stolworthy was a perfect fit for Jack, from Jack in the Beanstalk, even dying his blond hair 'carrot top red' to fit the role. Post-graduate Will Fellows, who is known on campus as a kind, gentle classmate, took on the challenge of playing the creepy, predatory role of the wolf, and did a very impressive job. Senior Jalen Cruz, who is no stranger to singing with the Riddlers, took his talents to the acting stage for the first time as Cinderella's Prince, and Jackson Berry '17 continued his involvement in the theater as the 'Mysterious Man,' a role that added some comic relief to a haunting tale.
The play called for: 25 performers (including 20 from Miss Porter's); a 10-person production team managed by Technical Director James Kassel; a nine-piece orchestra led by Director of Choral Activities Sarah Paquet; and one faculty cameo appearance.In addition to a large cast and crew to organize, the winter season added an illness, a travel ban, and multiple school breaks and rehearsal cancellations to the tight schedule."This was my first time directing a musical, and I knew it would be challenging because it entails so much more than a play," said Director Chris Bolster. "But knowing it would be a challenge and going through it turned out to be two very different things. I am so thankful that our crew pulled together as a team to make it a success. Through all the challenges, everyone involved was determined, committed, and put on a great show."
The team put on a total of four shows for audiences, two of which were late additions to the schedule due to large crowds and cancelled dress rehearsals.