Oh, The Places They’ll Go

Jessica Parillo ’18
EE Co-Managing Editor

On Friday, March 17th, the Trumbull High Theatre Department brought the world of Dr. Seuss to life with their outstanding performance of Seussical The Musical. After months of intense rehearsal and daily practice, the group was thrilled to finally take the stage and showcase their talents for members of the Trumbull community to enjoy.

Under the direction of Trumbull High teachers Mrs. Jessica Spillane and Mrs. Shannon Bolan, students worked to perfect their performance skills to uphold their reputation as one of the top theatre programs in the state of Connecticut. Other members of the production staff included Frank and Abby Root, who directed choreography for the dance ensemble, as well as Jerold Goldstein, who served as a vocal coach.

The musical combined the storylines of several popular children’s novels written by Dr. Theodor Seuss, such as The Cat in the Hat, Horton Hears a Who, and Oh the Thinks You Can Think. While geared more for a younger audience, the show was perfect for families and enjoyed by people of all ages.

The musical’s success can be credited to the talented cast, who brought personality to the beloved characters of Seuss’s stories. Sophomore Jacqueline Mate played an amazing JoJo and led the way with her strong vocal ability and stage presence. Her performance was perfectly matched by her co-leading actor and fellow sophomore Harrison Gilberti, who played the role of the Cat in the Hat. His humorous narrations and quirky impressions drew much laughter from the audience.

“Being in the cast has taught me that hard work and dedication can go a long way,” says Gilberti. “But after seeing how incredible the show turned out to be, I was so glad I pushed myself during those rehearsals because in the end we had a phenomenal show.”

These same sentiments were felt by junior Christopher Conaway, who showcased his seemingly effortless acting skills as Horton the Elephant. As a transfer from Fairfield Prep, Conaway was excited to be a part of his very first THS Musical.

“This show has been a highlight of my first year at THS,” he commented. “I knew I was getting into a great musical program, but I never could have imagined being a part of it. I learned two major things: truly connecting with your character and how much of a family this program is. Everyone was so supportive of each other.”

Other amazing performances were given by Tessa Speaks (Gertrude McFuzz), Alison Karpowich (Mayzie LaBird), Matt Ferri and Helen Samoskevich (Mr. and Mrs. Mayor), the Bird Girls, the Wickersham Brothers, and the Kangaroos.

The same amount of work was going on behind the scenes as well as on-stage. Elaborately colorful sets, costume designs, and lighting all contributed to the grandeur of the show, bringing the Jungle of Nool to life in the auditorium.

Stage Manager Mia McKinney, a junior at THS, speaks highly of her experiences with crew. “My biggest take away is the feeling of accomplishment when everything comes together at the end,” she says. “The feeling that the show could not happen without me calling the lights is very powerful.”

Their hard work has certainly paid off. After two weekends of successful shows and praise from critics, the group looks forward to attending the Connecticut Musical Theatre Awards at Gala on June 5th. Wish them luck and congratulations again to an outstanding cast. Oh, the places you’ll go!

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