Arts and Entertainment

MPHS Drama presents ‘The Wedding Singer’

Marysville-Pilchuck High School actors learn to dance 1980s style for their production of “The Wedding Singer: the Musical,” which starts at 7:30 p.m. on April 23, 24, 25, 30, May 1 and 2 at the high school theater. - Sarah Arney
Marysville-Pilchuck High School actors learn to dance 1980s style for their production of “The Wedding Singer: the Musical,” which starts at 7:30 p.m. on April 23, 24, 25, 30, May 1 and 2 at the high school theater.
— image credit: Sarah Arney

Twelve Marysville-Pilchuck High School students went all the way to New Jersey to research the roles they are playing in “The Wedding Singer: The Musical” which opens this week.

“Some of us were in New York experiencing Broadway theater and the sights and sounds of Manhattan and New Jersey just a few weeks ago,” the drama teacher, Roy Klementsen, said adding he and a group of students went on spring break.

“It was a perfect, since ‘The Wedding Singer’ takes place in New Jersey. The actors were able to get a pretty good feel for the area and the people,” Klementsen said.

“The experience gave them additional insight for their characters that they are portraying on stage in this production.”

Indeed, the people of New Jersey weren’t the only thing the students learned about by presenting this musical.

“We learned a lot about the 1980s,” said Katie Lundi, who plays Linda.

“The musical is a wealth of ‘80s references,” Lundi said, adding her character is the female version of Glen, who is the bad guy, played by Josh Beamer.

“He’s an arrogant, self-centered, pompous guy,” Beamer said about his character. “I had to think of what makes me really mad to figure out how to play the part,” he said.

“It’s a really funny show,” Lundi said. “It’s a nice love story with a great message.”

Madison Pickard plays Rosie Hart, a very hip and funky old lady, Robbie’s grandma.

“I wanted that part from day one and tried out with it in mind,” Pickard said.

“She’s so cool, she does all kinds of inappropriate things, it’s embarrassing,” laughed the 14-year-old who is performing in her first play.

A senior, Jordan Griffith is also in his first stage role, although he’s been working back stage for three years.

“I’m the drummer in the band, a quiet guy,” Griffith said. He plays two parts, Sweet Jim and Rickie and is helping with lighting design as well.

Nick Poling plays the lead role as Robby Hart, who gets dumped in the first scene and who works as a wedding singer.

“It’s an all around funny show,” agreed Poling and Shane Hoffmann, the bass player for the band, who wears a bright orange suit.

“The Wedding Singer: The Musical” is based on the 1998 Adam Sandler movie of the same name. The musical had it’s pre-Broadway engagement at Seattle’s 5th Avenue Theatre in early 2006, Klementsen said.

“I was there for the first performance and was hooked by the show’s energy, music, dancing, ‘80s nostalgia and comedy. Even though the show was in it’s rough stages, it was the most fun that I’ve had at a show since ‘Hairspray’ which also debuted at the 5th Avenue Theatre,” Klementsen said.

He added that the cast had a great time immersing themselves in the 1980s.

“They learned about fashions, fads, music, movies and tons of other ‘80s trivia.”

Pretty good for a group of kids born in the early 1990s.

“The Wedding Singer” starts at 7:30 p.m. on April 23, 24, 25, 30, May 1 and 2 .

Admission is $8 for adults and $6 for seniors and students with ASB cards.

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