Pirates Reported in Bedford

Summerstock, 2015: Pirates of Penzance cast photo - Image (c) Linda White, 2015 all rights reserved
Summerstock, 2015: Pirates of Penzance cast photo – Image (c) Linda White, 2015 all rights reserved

By Linda White

Poster600Arrr! There are reports of pirates in Bedford and they are not of the Bedford Buccaneer variety. Get ready Bedford, the Pirates of Penzance will be on stage in the JGMS air conditioned auditorium Thursday, August 6 at 1:00 and 7:00 pm. Junior Summerstock Theater, a four-week musical theater experience for students in grades 4 through 9, is a perennial Bedford Recreation Summer Adventure favorite.

This summer’s production, Gilbert and Sullivan’s classic operetta “The Pirates of Penzance”, is under the experienced direction of Amy Budka with Jessica Ham, Deanna Logo, Fritz Standtlander and Melanie Cordero. A talented cast of 32 including 12 students entering grade 9, all of whom are veteran performers from Junior Summerstock and JGMS musical plays, will take to the stage.

Gilbert and Sullivan productions are standard fare of the Harvard-Radcliffe Gilbert & Sullivan Players, but many of us may wonder how it would be handled by a more junior cast. Director Budka explained, “We don’t usually try a play as intricate as this one, but I knew this was a very special group that could rise to the occasion. Our version of the Pirates of Penzance is a “junior” version, abridged for younger voices and an all-ages audience. With just a week to go until showtime, they are proving me right. They haven’t had as much “down time” as we usually get in a typical summer camp setting. It’s been a challenge just to learn so much music in such a short time, and the amazing choreography has filled up our days too. Honestly, I wanted to challenge myself as well.”

Click each of Amy Budka’s candid rehearsal shots to see the full-sized image

Budka continued, “This is my 24th summer as director of Junior Summerstock. This is the 5th summer Jessica and I have worked together. She is also the choreographer of the BHS spring musicals, and is an elementary classroom teacher in the Concord Public Schools. Fritz (BHS 2016) has been the tech manager for 5 years as well. Both Deanna and Melanie started as Junior Summerstock campers when they were in elementary school. I am so proud of my team. If this style of musical comedy is unfamiliar, this play is the perfect introduction. And if you know every word of “Modern Major General”, you’ll be impressed to see that now, we do too!”

Plan to be in your seat when the curtain goes up on Thursday, August 6 at either 1:00 or 7:00 pm in the air-conditioned John Glenn Middle School auditorium on 99 McMahon Road in Bedford. The play runs about an hour and there is one short intermission. Admission is free. Donations will be gratefully accepted for the Bedford Summer Adventures Scholarship Fund.

Cast members include The Pirate King, Ben Woodward; Samuel, Mina Bostwick; Ruth, Maddie Siegal; Frederick, Noah Southard; Mabel, Kate Winkler; Major General Stanley, Eran Zelixon; Sergeant, Bella Panagiotou; Kate, Samantha Gallant; Edith, Eleanor Lowen; Isabelle, Madi Belbute; Daughter’s Chorus: Ani Fotis, Isabelle Gitlin, Martha Haviland, Lucy Santiago;  Pirate Chorus: Juliana Baer, Natalie Barney, Sidney Daniels, Sophia Gitlin, Jillian Guetersloh, Liz Henning, Isabel Hon-Anderson, Rosalind Lowen, Ellie Mitchell, Adriana Panagiotou, Isabella Santiago, Julia Silvestrone, Sarah Wirth, Eva Derderian, Avaanika Nair, Samantha Nappi, Francesca Pellegrino, Elena Protasowicki.

Calendar note:

International Pirate Day is

September 15, 2015

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