Already have a Christmas countdown? Come see the St. Mary’s production of White Christmas to start off your holiday season and give the musical theatre seniors a final round of applause.
As we prepare for the holiday season, St. Mary’s theater is embracing the spirit with their production of the musical, “White Christmas.” This show is a fun loving story featuring two World War II veterans, a failed Broadway star, some showgirls, and a whole lot of dancing. The cast has worked very hard over the past weeks preparing the choreography and memorizing numbers. For the seniors, this is their last musical at St. Mary’s. This means Bizzy Walker, Mia Wilson, Morgan Paley, Abby Utley, Emmaline Rogers, Emma Harkavy, Sophia Meibom, and Emily O’Toole are about to take their final musical bows on the Buckman stage.
Making a show performance-ready takes dedication from the theater crew. Rehearsals can run long, especially given the complexity of the choreography in “White Christmas.” For example, the show includes a tap number with chairs. Luckily, drama kids know how to have fun and keep everyone laughing; therefore, a dull moment is extremely rare. “Just yesterday, the power went out for about ten seconds, red lights flashed, and then someone screamed ‘ghost’ which led to us all trying to run at the same time” Morgan Paley (12) said.
Because of moments like these and all of the time spent practicing on stage, the cast gets close. “It gets to the point when you see each other for almost eight hours a day. You scream songs and wear costumes and applaud each other … theater has become my family,” McKinley Gilmore (10) said. Gilmore elaborated that because of these close relationships, it is so hard when the production comes to an end, especially when having to say goodbye to the seniors. “I will miss all of them so much. Theater just won’t be the same.” she admitted.
Paley has been doing theater ever since she came to St. Mary’s as a sophomore. In “White Christmas,” she portrays Martha Watson, the ex-broadway actress who becomes a concierge of the Pine Tree Inn. While reflecting back on her theatre years, Paley said, “I will miss all of the jokes we make as a cast, the amazing craziness of tech week, getting to work with Mrs. Madden, and being in shows with my friends!”
Bizzy Walker (12) has been doing St. Mary’s theatre since the fourth grade. She said, “I have grown up here ...It’s my home.” Walker has spent countless hours in the Buckman not only performing musicals, but also practicing dance. In “White Christmas,” she gets to really show off her talents through her role of Judy Haynes, a dancer, and sister to Betty Haynes. These two sisters catch the eye of World War II veterans and their love story becomes a focal point of the musical. Through the years, Walker has worked her way up to being cast in a main role. In fact, in her last words of advice, Walker admitted, “I was a hag and a carpet in some of the shows here. Yes, I was angry at that casting, but I now appreciate how hard it is to cast shows. Mrs. Madden is the best, and you have to trust her vision. And looking back on it, I was a fantastic carpet.” In the acting world, no part is ever too small; everyone must be willing to come together to put on the show.
The cast of “White Christmas” is ecstatic to perform this musical. Performances will take place at 7 p.m., Friday, Nov. 16; 7 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 17; 2 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 18 at the Buckman Theater. Coming to see the show is a great way to start off the holiday season and see the seniors in their final musical.