Cinderella cast prepares for grand performance in November


Brett Gruetzmacher

From left to right, Nikki Ranney (‘18), Kara Olander (‘18), and Sophie Michalski (‘18) pose for a photo, dressed up in their magical attire for the upcoming play. Be sure to come to watch the play from Nov 16-19 at the Sharon Lynn Wilson Center!

A glass slipper, a magical carriage, and a spell that breaks at midnight? This year, the school musical is one of the most famous fairy tales ever told: Cinderella. The production for the musical is now in full swing, and it couldn’t be more exciting! With on-stage transformations and stunning costumes, it will be a pleasure to see how the actors bring the story to life.

This year’s main cast contains many female leads: Cinderella’s stepsisters, her stepmother, the fairy godmother, and of course, Cinderella herself. In the lead roles are Lindsey Retzlaff (Ella), Henning Mahn (Prince Topher), Sasha Pavlovic Marie (the fairy godmother), Ben Kindler (Sebastian), Riley Wistrom (Jean Michel), Nikki Ranney (Gabrielle), Sophie Michalski (Charlotte), and Kara Olander (Madame).

The story in the musical is similar to the Disney version that most people are familiar with, yet it maintains the more traditional elements of Cinderella. Rather than being geared towards children, this musical places more emphasis on the plot and developing more complex and mature characters.

Retzlaff, who will be playing Cinderella, reflected on her role. “In high school, I haven’t played a big character yet. I played Annie in 8th grade, but Cinderella is completely different. Annie is a strong singer who belts, while Cinderella is more of a soft-spoken girl who sings sweetly and quietly. I would say my personality matches more to Annie, so it’ll be a fun challenge for me.”

Retzlaff and the rest of the cast have been hard at work over the past month, attending vocal rehearsals, working on acting, and nailing down the choreography. The cast has been practicing three to four days a week after school, for anywhere from one to three hours. The rehearsals are separated into three sections, with Mrs. Allison Hickmann as the vocal director and Mr. Thomas Lueck for acting, as well as a choreographer. The crew and pit orchestra are also toiling away, practicing for hours on end, but there is no doubt that all of this hard work will play a vital role in the success of the production.

Retzlaff said she cannot wait for people to see the final product. “The costumes are going to be really cool. There’s costume changes on stage that we have to figure out: Cinderella transforms into a princess, and the fairy godmother transforms from a beggar into a fairy godmother. The stepsisters are going to be a really fun part of the show because of how sassy and ridiculous they are. Sophie Michalski plays Charlotte, and she’s a wonderful actress. The dancing and choreography is fun too.”

Retzlaff said that what she is looking forward to the most is spending time with her fellow cast members. “I really like bonding with the whole cast, especially since the seniors made it a big priority last year to include everyone and make everyone have an enjoyable time. Everyone who wasn’t a senior from the Oliver cast auditioned for Cinderella, and I think a big part of it is because of how the seniors last year made it feel so fun. I want to do the same as a senior this year.”

Cinderella will be showcased at the Sharon Lynn Wilson Center from November 16 through the 19. Retzlaff says, “Last year, all of our shows sold out. This year, we’re expecting the same, so don’t forget to buy your tickets!”