Some of America's most talented screen and Broadway stars have graced Howard County high school stages including veteran film star Edward Norton and current Broadway stars Adam Dannheisser (Dennis in "Rock of Ages") and Margo Seibert (Adrian in "Rocky: The Musical").
With the high school spring musical season in full swing, here's a chance to witness a potential superstar in the making at two upcoming Ellicott City productions -
Directed by Tom Sankey, Mt. Hebron High School presents the musical "Damn Yankees" featuring 90 actors, a 20-person production team and a live 35-member orchestra. Performances are Saturday, March 15, Thursday, March 20, Friday, March 21 and Saturday, March 22, at 7 p.m., and Sunday, March 16 at 2 p.m.
Leading the cast are Ben Straube (Joe Boyd), Paul Lutchenkov (Joe Hardy — Joe's alter ego), Rahul Sitaram (Mr. Applegate) and Maliaka Mc Corn (Lola). Featured roles are played by Scarlett Forgrave (Gloria), Naomi Abankwah (Meg) and Cole Watts (Senators manager) along with Olivia Barnum, Carly Wakefield, Drew Holt, Sam Bishop, David Niezelski, Tharen Rice, Greg Seagla and Warren Harris.
Amanda Tschirgi heads the choreography team working with musical directors Chris Hettenbach and Dan Pendley, set designer Pete Johnson, costume designer Barbara Bogart, lighting director student Anna Pickard and stage managers students David Herlihy and Nishellie Navaratne. Tickets are $10 per person. Reservations can be made by calling Mt. Hebron high school during school hours at 410-313-2880.
Centennial High School's Kathryn Carlsen directs the school's musical theater production of "Beauty and the Beast," on Thursday, March 20, and Friday, March 21, at 7 p.m., Saturday, March 22, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and Sunday, March 23, at 3 p.m.
The cast of 75 students is lead by Anne Marie Demme (Belle), Francisco Joseph (Beast), Bobby Henneberg (Maurice), Daniel Giangrandi (Gaston), Jon Kittner (Lefou), Ben Newman (Monsieur D'Arque), Mrs. Potts (Montria Walker), Niall Musonda (Lumiere), Miguel Fernandez (Cogsworth), Sarah Fritz (Babette), Madame de la Grande Bouche (Amanda Krew), and Ella Boodin (Chip).
The creative team consists of student stage managers Audrey Schlimm and Sydney Zeigler who oversee a 30-member tech crew, vocal director Jessica Cummings, orchestra director David Matchim with his 20-member student pit band and choreographer Rebecca Clark.
Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door (if available). Advance tickets can be purchased at http://www.seatyourself.biz/chstheatre or during school lunch periods the week of the show.
Prior to the show's Sunday, March 23, 3 p.m., matinee, CHS theater department will host an Enchanted Tea from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the cafeteria where kids can sip tea, meet show characters and enjoy crafting. The Enchanted Tea tickets include complimentary reserved "Beauty and the Beast" seating when show tickets are purchased separately. Seating for the tea is limited and tickets are sold in advance only. Tickets are $10 per child, $5 per adult and are available at seatyourself.biz/chstheatre. For more information, contact Kathryn Carlsen at 410-313-2856 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Calling all young thespians. Columbia Center for Theatrical Arts is holding auditions for its Junior Teen Professional Theatre Company summer production of "Footloose: The Musical," Wednesday, March 19, from 6 to 8 p.m., and Thursday, March 20, from 4 to 6 p.m., at St. John's Parish in Ellicott City. Auditions are held in 30-minute intervals and advanced registration is required online at http://www.CCTArts.com. For more information, call 410-381-0700.
Clarlen Nursery is hosting its third annual Wheely Fun Day on Friday, March 21, from 1 to 3 p.m. (raindate Friday, March 28). This free event is a community family outreach program for children and adults according to school director Helen Moody.
Families will have an opportunity to view and experience a variety of "things on wheels" including a school bus, fire engine, ambulance, concrete truck, police car, FBI vehicle, bikes, sports vehicles, semi tractor, rollback truck, Bobcat, limousine, tractor, pop-up camper, army vehicles and ice cream truck.
Don't forget to check out balloon artist Tom Lilly who will be creating his popular balloon magic. Clarlen Nursey is at Bethany United Methodist Church, 2875 Bethany Lane in Ellicott City. For more information contact the school at 410-465-7405.