Dr. Seuss starts singing and dancing

Seussical: The Musical comes to the Althouse Theatre

Tuesday, April 7th, 2009

Seussical: The Musical

THE BEST DR. SEUSS CHARACTER EVER? YEAH, THATS RIGHT. THE GRINCH HAS GOT NOTHING ON THE LORAX! Seussical: The Musical comes to the Althouse Theatre Feb. 21 to 24. Be prepared for dancing, singing and idiosyncratic rhymes.

There’s fun to be had so to Althouse we go... to bring back great memories and see a great show!

Althouse Student Theatre brings everyone’s favourite childhood characters to life this week when its annual production opens. Seussical: The Musical, based on the popular stories of Dr. Seuss, is a family show full of dancing, singing, and lots of rhyming words.

Narrated by the Cat In The Hat, the story centres on Horton the Elephant of Dr. Seuss’ Horton Hears A Who. As Horton tries to protect Whoville’s tiny residents, he encounters several characters from other Seuss works like Green Eggs & Ham, The Lorax, and Miss Gertrude McFuzz.

The show’s morale message coincides well with the fact that the production is put on by future teachers and role models.

“It’s something that is high energy that’s appropriate for all ages,” said Jessica Edwards, who plays Gertrude McFuzz. “It works really well with the concept of teacher’s college and with what we’re doing with our lives.”

The show was produced by the senior drama class as part of its program, but Edwards is one of many Althouse students who auditioned for the show as a volunteer. The annual production aims to prepare students for the world of teaching and to stress the importance of extracurricular involvement.

Many of these students’ passion for drama comes from positive experiences in elementary and high school.

Kristin Lowe, a performer and the show’s production manager, said her drama teacher had a profound influence on her. She wants to be a role model for her own students someday and this project has made her even more enthusiastic.

“It’s exhausting, but exciting at the same time,” said co-director Mary Dzolganovski. “It’s something we can bring to when we’re teaching, so we’re glad to have the experience.”

Mark Graham, who plays Horton the Elephant, said he’s thrilled with the directorial and production teams.

“It’s a case of constantly being pleasantly surprised at what everybody can do and what they bring to this show,” he said.

Audiences can expect a little bit of everything from Seussical. The story is told largely through music, featuring styles ranging from salsa to southern gospel. The entirely original choreography, done by Althouse’s Sarah Buddo, is especially impressive.

“[Buddo] has just done an amazing job,” Graham said. “She is such a gifted choreographer and really has a good sense of what people who aren’t as skilled in dance can actually do and make it look good.”

Seussical promises to be entertaining for all ages. While it incorporates some humour kids will miss, it has a strong message about using your imagination and being an individual.

“Messages like that are good to hear whether you’re four or 40,” Edwards said.

Seussical: The Musical runs Feb. 21 to 24, 7:30 p.m. at the Althouse Auditorium. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for kids. Call 519-672-8800 or visit www.grandtheatre.com for more details.

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