‘Into the Woods’ returns to SMA stage

Photo by Amy Cherry - SMAHS is presenting “Into the Woods,” a dark comedy featuring a hodgepodge of familiar fairy tales about wishes, family and the choices we make. Showtimes are 7 p.m. April 12, 13 and 14 in the SMAHS Carpin Auditorium.
Amy Cherry
Staff Writer

A hodgepodge of familiar fairytales told with a twist is in store for those attending the annual musical hosted by the St. Marys Area High School Music and Theatre Departments.
The dark comedy, “Into the Woods,” is an epic fairytale about wishes, family and the choices we make. Among the stories featured in the show are Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Rapunzel.
“The nice thing about this show is there is something always going on,” said Ann Defilippi, assistant director and sound technician. “There’s not a point where you are sitting and waiting. For people who like a lot of singing and get bored with dialogue, this is an awesome show because there are a lot of songs that are upbeat.”
Showtimes are 7 p.m. April 12, 13 and 14 in the SMAHS Carpin Auditorium.
This year’s musical, under the direction of Chris Gankosky, showcases the largest cast and crew of any previous musical. Students participating in the show are in grades 3-12. The cast includes 40 high school students and 30 students in the elementary choir.
“This is one of the larger productions we have done as far as the number of people who have to be moving, singing and speaking,” Defilippi said.
Because of this, she stressed the importance of everyone involved being at the top of their game from the orchestra and cast to the staff in the booth and backstage.
Defilippi said this year’s show is the same type as performed on Broadway rather than a student version.
“The songs are difficult. The music is tough, but these kids are nailing it,” Defilippi said. “This is probably one of the best singing casts we have had in a long time. They stepped up their game this year which was awesome.”
Adam Brooks, SMA music teacher, has worked with students as the show’s vocal coach.
Among those portraying feature characters are Aiden Bobik as the narrator, Ryan Schauer as Jack, Lindsey Badeau as Jack’s mom, Lexi Cunningham as Little Red, Sophie Cadori as The Witch, Zack Kline as The Baker, Kelsey Benjamin as Baker’s Wife, Anneliese Wolfanger as Cinderella, Black Greishaw as Cinderella’s father and Sara Kleppinger as Cinderella’s mother, Chloe Bierley as The Stepmother, Lexi Catalone as Florinda, Alayna Pesce as Lucinda, Matt Fleming as Mysterious Man, John Copello as Rapunzel’s Prince, Finn Caskey as Cinderella’s Prince, Andrew Atwell as Steward, Nick Herzing as the wolf, Nikki Tymczyszyn as Granny, Izzy Benjamin as Giant, Nick Goodwill as Footman, Kira Pesce as Snow White, Jenna Riddle as Sleeping Beauty and Boaz Quinones as a villager.