November 21, 2013 at 2:19 p.m.

Charming musical with positive message on school's stage

Charming musical with positive message on school's stage
Charming musical with positive message on school's stage

North Branch High School is doing the musical “HONK” on stage this weekend ...with a little help from its friends. Instead of re-inventing the wheel and spending money needlessly, the North Branch cast is using set pieces and costumes borrowed from Masquers’ Theatre, Forest Lake High School, Totino-Grace and Northwestern University in Roseville. The costumes are especially imaginative and really add to the experience.

HONK clearly tracks the much beloved ugly duckling tale, but with a couple twists. It is a favorite production of directors and choreographers working with actors at the high school-level, commented artistic director Janice Murphy Roman, during a first run-through November 15. There are only a few musicals truly suitable for the high school, and post secondary school circuit, as they are adaptable to the students’ abilities and allow a large number of youth to be involved, in this play more than 20 spend time on stage.

The music can be perfected in a short rehearsal window, under the guidance of Cathy Regnier, Renee King and James Pope. The HONK ducklings, pictured below with the “ugly” sibling are Ali Kari, Lynnia Alden, Annelise Zieden and Fiona Nelson. Playing the late-hatching, unattractive and gawky brother of the brood is Zach Stenger, who is perfectly cast. All the parts appeared to be well cast, actually. Ida (the mother duck) is in the confident hands of Megan Murphy, who very capably sings, dances and acts motherly. The show starts Thursday, Nov 21 at 7 p.m. and also is at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. There’s a Sunday, Nov 24 performance at 2 p.m. Tickets are sold at County Market or at the school activities office, $6 for students and $8 for adults. The Edelstein Auditorium is on the northeast corner of the high school, turn by the ballfield and parking lot attendant’s house.


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