Last week I got to be young again with Gig Harbor High School thespians as they rehearsed that all-time favorite “Guys and Dolls.”
The spirit-lifting musical opens March 16 and is set in spring 1950 in New York City and Havana, Cuba. It’s a musical romantic comedy involving the unlikeliest of Manhattan pairings: a high-rolling gambler and a puritanical missionary, a showgirl dreaming of the straight-and-narrow and a craps game manager who is anything but.
“The way we all work together even when everything seems like it’s falling apart — sometimes the day before opening, is my favorite part,” said the show’s head of props, sophomore Bailey Floyd. “That’s when you realize it was all worth it. This show will take all the dice, mink, and strudel from the world, and manage to bring you along with it. It’s a must-see.”
Classmate River Shipley. who is playing Sky Masterson, said “Bonding with the cast is the best part for me. People should see the show because we worked our tails off to make it amazing.”
To senior Jordan Greene, who plays Miss Adelaide, “Dancing on stage with my best friends!” is her favorite part of the show. “People should see the show because it’s relatable, lovable and all the characters will bring a smile to your face!”
Playing a member of the mission band, junior Kaity Adams’ favorite part is the sense of family that comes with being a part of the cast. “This show is a lot of fun that everyone should experience,” she said.
Playing a hot box girl, a Havana dancer and society max, senior Sydney Underwood said, “It’s hard putting on a musical, hard for the actors and the musicians and the understudies and the crew and the director, but the feeling I get when the curtain closes on opening night, the amazement that a bunch of ragtag kids managed to pull together and build something from nothing, the awe that we actually pulled it off, that’s all worth it. ‘Guys and Dolls’ has something for everyone. From Bible quotes to show girls to cheesecake, this show really covers all the stops. There’s jazz and high energy dances, but there’s also ballroom dances and love songs. What else can you hope for in a musical?”
Playing the part of Lt. Brannigan, senior Adam Finch, likes, “escaping reality for a little bit and getting into my character. The show has a something for every person to enjoy: romance, comedy, gambling, entertaining musical numbers, and a captivating story.”
Sophomore Cameron Showalter who plays Benny Southstreet enjoys getting to see some of my favorite people everyday. “You’ll get to see some amazing people play in an amazing show that is full of laughter and an overall fun experience,” he said.
For freshman Sierra Witsmeer, who runs sound for the show, listening to the music is her favorite part. “It’s really an overall amazing show! The songs are catchy and there are so many funny parts!” she said.
For junior Megan Churness, who plays General Cartwright, “Watching all of our hard work bring the show together is so much fun. Everyone in the show is so talented and the show itself is so funny and just makes you want to smile.”
Part of the mission band, freshman Anya DeGroot enjoys making new friends and being a part of the breathtaking sets, memorable songs, and masterful choreography of these phenomenal shows. “It brings all of the theater kids closer together, and allows us to experience the best of moments with the best of people. We want people to see the result of our hard work, of which we are undoubtedly hugely proud,” she said.
Sarah Brown is played by senior Julie Ronning, whose said her favorite part of the show experience is getting to spend every day laughing, sharing ideas and doing what she loves with her people. “Guys and Dolls is a heartwarming and hilarious show you can’t help but fall in love with,” she said.
It’s so good, Frank Sinatra would be jealous!
Hugh McMillan is a longtime contributing writer for the Gateway. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Guys and Dolls
- When: 7 p.m. March 16-17, 22-24; 2 p.m. March 18; 1 p.m. March 24. The performance runs two and a half hours, including one intermission
- Where: Gig Harbor High School, 5101 Rosedale St. NW.
- Tickets: $12 students/seniors; $14 adults at the door. Cash or check only. Presale tickets can be purchased online at tinyurl.com/ghhsguysdolls through March 15.
- Information: tinyurl.com/ghhsguysdolls