Trish Dry is thrilled to be guest directing the upcoming Zachary High School production of “Hairspray.”
Students enrolled in Dry’s gifted and talented theater class and those in play production I and II, theater I and choir are all part of the classic John Waters-directed movie of the same name that deals with segregation in the 1960s through song and dance.
“I was surprised they asked me but no less thrilled and honored,” Dry said. “The kids chose this musical last year, and it was cast before the summer break. We began rehearsing in September. The cast and crew have embraced this show head on, and they are truly amazing.”
“Hairspray” is set in 1962 Baltimore and tells the story of a lovable teen outcast Tracy Turnblad, who has one desire: to dance on a popular television show.
The plus-size teen receives her wish and is transformed from social misfit to overnight celebrity. She uses her newfound power to dethrone the reigning teen queen, Amber Von Tussle; win the affections of her crush, Link Larkin; and help integrate the television show — all without denting her “do.”
“This show addresses social issues of the ’60s in an authentic way,” Dry said. “And these students have done an amazing job in bringing this (issue) in a real way. They are passionate about the unfairness of segregation and have tackled the subject matter with perfect aplomb through song and dance.”
Dry said the subject matter is PG-13 and for middle school-age children and older, though innuendo would be lost on smaller children.
The production was approved by former Principal Wes Watts prior to leaving, Dry said, and current Principal Joe LeBlanc has been supportive.
“He is a huge fan of the arts,” Dry said.
Play production I, II and theater II teacher Jen Masterson, who recently directed many of the same students in “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,” is producing the musical.
“It’s pretty neat to watch a show take shape from a different perspective,” Masterson said. “Trish is a lot of fun and does a great job. I’ve always believed it’s important for young actors to pursue a variety of performance opportunities, and that includes working with different directors.”
Jeremy Reynolds is the visual/performing arts coordinator.
Shelbi Bush is assistant director/intern; Joe Havard, stage manager; Tony Collins, choreographer/cast member; and Alana Scott and Jamarcus Smith, who both play key roles in the cast, help round out the crew.
The ZHS production of the musical “Hairspray” includes Emma Dry as Tracy Turnblad; Grant Washington as Corny Collins; Bethany Godbold as Amber Von Tussle; Brooke Cranford as Velma Von Tussle; Alana Scott as Motormouth Maybelle; Cece Kelly as Edna Turnblad; and Eric Scherrer as Wilbur Turnblad.
The cast also includes Breann Burson as Penny Pingleton; Kyla Bates as Little Inez; Tony Collins as Seaweed; P.J. Cottano as Link Larkin; Jarmarcus Smith as Mr. Pinky/Bum/Thad; Curtis Hooper as Mr. Spritzer/principal/PE coach; Caleb Clayton as Brad; Lauren Smith as Tammy; Reid Saari as Fender; Ashley Soileau as Brenda/jailbird girl; Kade Riche as Sketch; Morgan Mazzarella as Shelley; Ethan Scherrer as IQ; Sophia Nowiki as LouAnn; Madeline Brown as Prudy Pingleton; Jake Thomas as Duane; Jeremiah Brown as Gilbert; Jovonte McDaniel as Stooie; Camryn Hayes as Lorraine; and Dominique Ferguson as Cindy.
Anika Jackson, Kennedy Jarvis and Kaitlin Hayes play The Dynamites.
Taylor Barnes, Zoe Heeter, Hayes and Ferguson have been cast as Pinky’s ladies. Peyton Whitcomb is a guard/officer; Aidan Hill is a guard/matron; and Julia Coreil plays a beatnik chick.
Chelsea Bernard, Kenlee McHugh, Jordan Miler, Madison Russell, Lauren Taylor, Antonio O’Neal and Barnes, J. Brown, Coreil, Ferguson, C. Hayes, Heeter, Jarvis, McDaniel, J. Smith, L. Smith, Soileau, Thomas and Jackson make up the ensemble cast.
“Hairspray” runs six nights: Jan. 22-24 and Jan. 29-31 at the Zachary Performing Arts Center located on the ZHS campus.
House opens at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and are available at Zachary High School.
To purchase tickets online, visit www.zhsdrama.ticketleap.com/hairspray. Service fees apply.