ECC musical taps into the Roaring 20s

Photo by Amy Cherry - Audiences will be transported to the Roaring 20s during the musical “Chicago: High School edition” taking place at ECC April 12-15. Shown are students during a rehearsal for the show.
Amy Cherry
Staff Writer

Fame, fortune and acquittal are coming to the stage of Elk County Catholic as the drama department prepares to showcase the legendary and award-winning musical Chicago: High School edition.
“People should see the show because the level of talent is so exceptional here right now,” said Jason Phipps, director. “I believe we’ve built up a nice group of students.”
He emphasizes the opening number of “All That Jazz” as one of the many highlights in the show.
Throughout the show students perform a large cast number followed by a smaller, more personal piece. Among the show’s more notable numbers are “Cell Block Tango”, “When You’re Good to Mama” and “We Both Reached for the Gun.”
“This gives the students numerous opportunities to perform. Plus they’re always changing costumes,” Phipps stated.
The show is based in the Roaring 20s when Roxie Hart, portrayed by Marcy Smith, murders her faithless lover and convinces her husband, Amos, portrayed by Stephen Bobby and Drew Daghir, to take the rap. Roxie turns into an overnight media sensation as plots to use her notoriety to launch a vaudeville career.
On death row Roxie and Velma Kelly, a Vaudeville performer accused of murdering her sister and husband portrayed by Kendra Smithbauer, vie for the spotlight and headlines, ultimately joining forces in search of fame, fortune, and acquittal.
Among the other main characters are Dana Gebauer as Matron Mama Morton, leader of the prisoners of Cook County Jail; Ethan Alexander as Sergeant Fogarty, assigned to Roxie’s case; Alex O’Neill and Logan Hoffman as Billy Flynn, a lawyer who has not lost a woman’s case; and Emily Miller as Mary Sunshine, a reporter.
“It’s a very vaudeville show and shows how theatre would have been like in the 1920s,” Phipps said. “It’s the right play, the right time.”
Spectators can take in Chicago April 12, 13, and 14 with curtain time at 7 p.m. or a Sunday matinee show at 2 p.m.