Beginning Friday, April 22, Springfield High School (SHS) students welcome you to “Be Our Guest” when they stage a three-performance run of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. Nearly 50 SHS students will appear as enchanted objects and a host of other characters throughout this classic tale brimming with favorite songs and beautiful costumes.
This year’s production will be enhanced by the availability for audience members to purchase Enchanted Roses for $5. The student cast members have selected the Springfield Literacy Project, which is part of Springfield’s Fishes & Loaves outreach, to receive the profit from the sale of all Enchanted Roses throughout the performance weekend. During intermission for each performance, our youngest audience members who have purchased an Enchanted Rose will be invited to the SHS Library where Belle will appear to greet them and to read a special story. The Enchanted Roses will also be needed during Act 2 of the performance so the audience can assist with some highly anticipated on-stage magic.
Based on the traditional fairy tale first published in France in the mid-18th century, Beauty and the Beast is a story of love and friendship. Disney released the animated feature film in 1991 and it successfully opened on Broadway in 1994. In the story, Belle, a beautiful yet headstrong bookworm, dreams of life outside of her provincial village. She finds her way to an enchanted castle ruled by an ugly beast who imprisons her elderly father. Unbeknownst to Belle, the Beast is a former Prince under an enchanted spell. He is cursed to a hideous beast form, as well as his servants as enchanted objects because of his arrogance and lack of love for others. The only way the spell can be broken is if he can learn to love and be loved before his 21st birthday. Initially, Belle views him as the monster he is, but with the help of the enchanted objects she begins to draw the cold hearted beast out of his isolation.
The curtain opens Friday April 22, at 7:30 p.m. in the Schnirring Auditorium at Springfield High School for the three-performance run. Saturday’s performance also begins at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday’s performance is set for 2 p.m.
Tickets, $8 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens, can be purchased by calling 525-3100 or at the door. All seating is general admission.
Directing Disney’s Beauty and the Beast is SHS alum Craig Williams, II. He is supported by Christie Lazarides as the assistant director, Damien Kaplan as the musical director, Morgan Kaplan as the choreographer, Mark Gifford as the vocal director, and Kim Carter Parker as the producer.
The Springfield Literacy Project is a holistic approach that focuses on family literacy. Families participate in individualized and group instruction that tailors to their educational needs. Instruction for the family together includes weekly library workshops, story time, parent and child activities, and monthly field trips.