The Tooele High School theater department performed one of Disney’s favorite productions, “High School Musical.” The show ran from Feb. 24 to March 3.
On opening night, the technical crew had some microphone malfunctions, which distracted from the play itself. But despite those difficulties, the play was fun and pleasantly similar to the movie, with a few clever differences.
The first scene took place at East High School, where the new girl, Gabriella (Kat Hawley and Emily Rice) told her new friend, Taylor (Anna McQueen and Airdrie Gillie) about her karaoke experience during New Year’s Eve.
Using dim, blue lights and a few simple decorations, the high school scenery briefly flash backed to Gabriella’s memory of singing with Troy Bolton (Colton Fowler and Brock Egan).
As more students arrive to school, the song “Start of Something New” is brought into the present from the New Year’s scene and the lyrics apply to the students’ goals and dreams, as opposed to the beginning of a romance.
One of the cutest things about the play was the scene in the classroom. In this scene, multiple students’ phones get taken away and the students are ordered to detention after school. When Troy sees that Gabriella must attend detention, he takes out his phone, shows the teacher, and throws it on the floor, causing it to break and Troy to receive detention with Gabriella. This small detail earned laughter from the audience and showed Troy’s delightful twitterpation.
My favorite addition to the production, which was not in the movie, was the detention scene. Detention was run by Ms. Darbus (Dawna Belnap and Marilyn Syra). As the drama teacher, Darbus made the children play an acting game that involved putting some sort of noise to an invisible ball and interpreting it in their own way.
When Troy received the “ball” he mimed it as a basketball and scored pretend points. Then he spun the ball on his finger and mimed it getting bigger, heavier and more difficult to hold up. This brilliantly foreshadowed the pressures of basketball that Troy would later face, as the star player of the high school team.
Though Colton Fowler is no Zach Effron, he kept the illusion of Troy alive during the entire production.