Talented children in spotlight

High School Musical is coming to Grand Cayman this weekend in a whirl of costumes, bright lights and a cast of almost 70 children. Children from schools across the Island, ranging in age from 6 to 15, are involved in this high energy, upbeat musical.

This is the first such production by local music school Musicians Ltd and the cast has been rehearsing since January. The performance promises to be energetic, colourful and uplifting.

Set in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the plot follows Gabriella Montez, a new girl trying to make a fresh start and shed her geeky reputation and Troy Bolton, son of the basketball coach, who is under pressure to lead his team to victory in the championships, although his real dream is to be on stage.

There’s a good dose of romance, but the story also takes a light-hearted look at some of the social pressures children face in the modern world, in terms of peer pressure, social cliques and the rebels who want to break the rules. Ultimately, the message is that we must work together for what we want, and that dreams can come true.

Janine Stabler, founder of Musicians Ltd., says she chose this contemporary musical for its optimistic message and for the high tempo, toe-tapping songs that children of all ages know and love. “This upbeat two-hour production features students with a wide variety of interests and talents, who learn they can all get along when they put aside their differences and work together – not forgetting that it can also be a lot of fun,” she says.

Musicians Ltd. provides instrumental and performing arts training for students and adults of all ages. Because there are so many talented kids out there who all deserve a chance to shine, Janine says, they created more lead roles by having two casts: The younger and the older versions of the lead characters.

Gweneth Stabler, Francisco Monteiro, Nicola Galvin and Costanza Corcoran are some of the older leads, while their younger selves are played by Melody Allenger, Kristina Wolf, Karinya Linford and Matty Cooke.

“Our biggest challenge has been the logistics of working with such a huge cast – it has been crazy at times, but it has all come together and the end result has been worth it,” Janine says.

High School Musical opened on Thursday, 3 May and will be performed this weekend only at Prospect Playhouse. For reservations, call 525-3301.

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