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Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

Mary-Elizabeth Ballard, Editor

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Seven Brides for Seven Brothers will be performed March 3rd and 4th at 7:00 pm in the Warren Central Auditorium. Tickets are eight dollars and can be purchased from any cast member or the choir room. Whether you enjoy romance, drama, action, comedy, or just a classic family tale, you will certainly enjoy Warren Central’s annual spring musical, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. The students and staff of Warren Central have spent countless hours since December 2016 making sure this production will be a success.

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is a classic musical that first debuted in cinemas in 1954 and was adapted for the stage in 1978. The story is set in the Oregon territory, where a young man named Adam Pontipee, played by Evan Cochran, has come into town to trade his goods. While he is there, he meets Milly, a spunky waitress. Milly is portrayed by Mary-Elizabeth Ballard. They quickly decide to get married, despite the townspeople’s warnings. When Milly arrives back at Adam’s homestead, she is greeted by the six unruly brothers that Adam neglected to tell her about. Milly is determined to teach them manners and how to act around women. When the brothers fall in love with the girls from town, the audience will not believe what happens next! Viewers need not worry, however, only happy endings await the Pontipee family.

Every member of the performing cast is extremely talented and dedicated. They all have  committed an exceptional amount of time and effort into the theatre. During an interview with several cast members, they agree that the ability to come together and create new relationships was the most rewarding thing about the musical: “For me, personally, the musical has always been the fastest way to make new friends. Some people I thought I’d never talk to are now people I laugh with everyday,” said Sophomore Peyton Pierce who portrays Ruth. Junior Lauren Hughes agreed, saying, “It’s fun getting to know people you probably never would’ve gotten to know.”  This year’s musical has many starring roles, featuring Kamren Ellis, Vincent Regan, Elijah Prevot, Jaylen Wilson, Alex Velasquez, and Lee Fortner as the brothers. The brides are portrayed by Carley Copelin, Peyton Pierce, Madeline Lee, Mia Wamsley, Alicia Foster, and Ann Wallace DeRossette.

Warren Central’s production of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is sure to be something the city of Vicksburg has never seen before. Part of the fun is being able to see friends perform, as well. Of course the students may recognize senior Evan Cochran (who is usually found either in the choir room or in the band hall) as Adam Pontipee, but they may do a double take when they see the multi-talented middle linebacker Kamren Ellis as Benjamin Pontipee, the second eldest brother. Overall, the cast consists of many students who have never performed on stage before. This gives the show a certain energy and freshness that many productions lack. “It has been a great as well as a different experience to take on the lead role of the musical. I’m having a wonderful time playing as Adam and getting to work with this years cast,” said senior Evan Cochran.

An often overlooked aspect of theatre is the set and crew. The props and set of this year’s musical are truly spectacular. There are several large pieces on stage that are constantly rotated and swapped to create different settings throughout the musical. All of the house pieces are double-sided and when flipped, become the town. “When I participated in the musical, I never thought of all the work the different crews put in in order to make it all happen. Being on crew has taught me many things, and it has been an amazing experience that I will never forget,” quoted Dekoree Freeman, a junior set crew member. Even beyond the stage are those who assist with hair and makeup. There is also house and publicity, who hand out programs and help out with whatever issues may arise. “It takes a lot of time and energy,” said sophomore Drew Jackson, “but it is the most fun and exciting part of the school year.”

Another integral aspect of this show is the orchestra. The orchestra this year is comprised of students as well as professional players. You will hear violin, french horn, trombone, oboe, flute, keyboard, as well as many percussion instruments. The orchestra brings the singing voices to a totally different level. The different instruments immerse the audience into the world that is being created on stage. Kayla Shoemaker, a senior in the orchestra pit, said, “It’s been a wonderful experience as a musician. It has challenged me, and given me an opportunity to play music I never would have played otherwise.” Kayla enjoys playing the oboe and getting to watch the finishing touches come together on stage. “It is also cool getting to play with different musicians and have interesting solos.”

Whether the audience comes to listen to the musical numbers, appreciate the breathtaking sets, or just to have the once in a lifetime experience of witnessing Vincent Regan dance will not matter to the cast and crew. The sight of a packed auditorium is enough for them.

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Seven Brides for Seven Brothers