Monday, April 24, 2017

HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 2 JR. - Florida Teens Recreate a Modern Classic (4.20-22.17)

Florida Teens Recreate
Modern Classic

I hadn't had the chance to
take in a live stage show in
quite some time. And this
one was a whole lotta fun!

It hardly seems possible, but the second film in Disney's wildly popular High School Musical series debuted a full decade ago, this summer. Where does the time go? However, hundreds of Palm Bay, Florida fans recently relived the musical's magic — like it was 2007 all over again.

Under the careful direction of Jennifer Rock and musical direction of Brady Boardman, Heritage High School's Musical Theatre class recreated the modern classic before enthusiastic crowds that filled the air-conditioned, state-of-the-art Heritage auditorium.

(L to R) Whitfill, Coliflower and Zill
Telling the engaging tale of spirited high school kids coming of age while working part-time summer jobs at the local country club, the energetic production played four times during the April 20-22 run and featured various actors in numerous roles, depending on the particular showing.

Bonely Paul as Troy Bolton (L)
Jordan Jarrett as Zeke Baylor (R)
With so many young and talented singers, dancers and actors playing so many roles, it would be darn near impossible for an outsider such as myself to not overlook a valuable contribution. Hence, I'll offer a heartfelt apology on the front end to those who I fail to acknowledge. 

The cast of High School Musical 2.
However, it would be remiss of me to not offer-up mad props to a few actors who caught my attention in particular — cast members including Bonely Paul as BMOC Troy Bolton, Johanna Whitfill as Troy's love interest Gabriella Montez, Kelly Price as the egocentric Sharpay Evans, Aspen Coliflower as the attention-starved Ryan Evans, Jordan Jarrett as Troy's buddy Zeke Baylor, Veronica LaCroix as the hyperactive Jack Scott and Dex Dawson as the stressed-out assistant country club manager Mr. Fulton. Brimming with contagious energy and boasting a fabulous hot pink coif, Kaitlyn Zill popped out nicely from the ensemble pack, while singer / pianist Caitlin Lenti sparkled like a diamond in her role as the delicate musical prodigy Kelsi Nielsen.

Kudos to cast and crew on a job well done!

-Christopher Long
(April 2017)

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