2008-11-20 / Entertainment

Elementary Musical Production Went To Arms!


The cast Of "Robin Hood - The Musical"
"Hi, Ho, Robin Hood, he was a hero brave and bold ..." told the tale to delighted audiences over the weekend of November 14, 15 and 16." The cast of 49 students from the fourth, fifth, and sixth grades shared the adventures in Nottingham with theatergoers in the MES production of "Robin Hood - The Musical."

The curtain opened on Friday evening to tell the story of Robin Hood, superbly portrayed by Cody Parson. Robin Hood, the outlaw of Sherwood Forest, lead a merry life with his followers. Anyone who was hungry, including the Old Widow, beautifully played by Sierra Carbaugh, or who had no place to live like the round-bellied Friar Tuck, wonderfully portrayed by Ethan Barclay, was welcomed in the greenwood. The citizens of the forest, including Beth (Rachel Barmont), Mother Meg (Veronica Stone), Will Scarlet (Miguel Saldivar), and Little John (Andrew Green) opposed the wicked Prince John, who had taken the place of King Richard the Lion-Hearted, who had gone to the Holy Land on a crusade.

The caravan that one day cut through the wood was in for a surprise when they encountered Robin and his Merry Band because in the convoy was Robin's childhood sweetheart, Maid Marian, (charmingly played by Hannah Ott), ward of King Richard. Alas, the evil Lady Merle of Cornwall portrayed masterfully by Destiny Lynch, planned to force Marian to marry the prince in an effort to make John more acceptable to the people of England. With the Sheriff of Nottingham, magnificently played by Austin Shelly, and his soldiers, Lady Merle thought her plan was foolproof. When Lady Merle discovered that Marian and Robin were reunited, she planned a county fair to be announced by the sheriff to trap Robin Hood. The Sheriff's Wife and Daughter Salome, hysterically portrayed by Alexa Helser and Abagael Peck, helped plan the fair, clueless to Lady Merle's true intentions. In the rollicking fair fun and the excitement of an archery contest Robin got away.

To arms they went as Robin and his merry band made a daring rescue and fought to stop the marriage, defeat the nasty sheriff and secure Nottingham for the King's return.

In addition to the cast's main characters, all of the ensemble, including the king, aptly played by Blake Garlock, the Merry Band, the fair show performers, and the ladies at court are to be commended for giving their best for the three performances.

Sue Cubbage returned as set design/construction supervisor and costume mistress. Sue and her crews, including veteran stagehand Doug Seiders, are to be applauded for their ability to make Sherwood Forest and the Castle of Nottingham come to life through set, properties, costumes and their ability to manage the actors and assure a smooth transition to the scenes. Congratulations to Sue Cubbage and Cassie Wilford, who assisted her, for their willingness to oversee the parents and family members who completed costumes in addition to the costumes they completed themselves. The stage came to life with the colorful array of the Merry Band and ladies at court and was accented by the sharply dressed soldiers.

Noreen Mann and the orchestra were again magnificent. Barb Mac- Donald and Larry Stepler provided the most wonderful accompaniment. As music director, Noreen is the heart and soul of the musical productions. She tirelessly gives of her time and talent after school and evenings, and she should be commended for her dedication and willingness to make the productions a success.

This was Hope Moore's seventh production as director. Hope directed the 2005, 2006 and 2007 MES musicals and the 2006, 2007, and 2008 summer community outreach productions. Hope has also served as director-in-training and as an assistant-to-the-director for the past five MHS musicals. Hope thanks the cast, crew, and the families of the students for all their hard work to make this production a success. She extends a special thank-you to all of the students and parents who helped with lighting and spots and hair and makeup. Without them there would be no show.

Christina Mellott Ramsey, MHS musical director, returned to share her talent and abilities with the children. She should be congratulated for her choreography, which brought the cast to life with authenticity and helped the students showcase their talent.

Congratulations to Troy Yaukey for his willingness to share his time and talent with the cast. As an assistant to the director and music director, Troy should be commended for the use of his gifts and talents to support the cast as part of his senior project. In addition to Troy completing his senior project, the production was also fortunate to have Sherri Lynn behind-thescenes for the third year. Sherri assisted with various duties that allowed the cast and crew to perform at a professional level.

Susanne Moore returned for her third year producing the MES musical, and she can be proud of all she did to make this production a success. In addition to all of her accomplishments behind the scenes, Susanne should be complimented for this year's good box office for the three performances.

"Robin Hood - The Musical" was the ninth production since 1994 at McConnellsburg Elementary and was completed with the support of the PPA grant from the Pennsylvania Council for the Arts.

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