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On November 5, 6, and 7, the talent of the district’s young actors and actresses once again amazed audiences when Blue Ridge Middle School staged its annual musical, “Bugsy Malone.” Set in 1920’s New York City, Dandy Dan’s gang and Fat Sam’s gang face off regularly, as they meet on streets and in speakeasies splurging each other and competing for territory. Blousey Brown comes to town hoping to secure a job as a singer in Fat Sam’s speakeasy and she runs into the guy in the middle, Bugsy Malone. He endeavors to help Blousey find a job, promising her a ticket to Hollywood, and in the meantime manages to bring the two gangs together to a peaceful ending.
Cast members of “Bugsy Malone.”
Nick Smith portrayed Bugsy Malone perfectly with flawlessly executed lines, his gangster persona, and great solos making it difficult to believe that he is merely an eighth grader. Blousey Brown was played expertly by Carissa Stonier, whose grace on the stage allowed us to feel her frustration with, and attraction to Bugsy when she auditioned to a song she sang like an angel, “Only a Fool.” JoAnna Steinberg, Allison Hawk, and Ashley Mattocks playing the three chorus girls had audiences singing and tapping in their seats as they performed at Fat Sam’s and backed up other singers. They worked wonderfully as one team to round out the show’s numbers. The speakeasy would not have run so smoothly without Fat Sam, played by Josh Allen and his sidekick Knuckles, Evan Cook. The two provided direction and much comic relief to the plot while Sam tried to get things under control and Knuckles continued to crack his knuckles and utter “Yes, boss.” Tallulah, Cassy Summers, Sam’s girl staked her territory as she sang her torch song, “My Name is Tallulah” with a voice far more mature than one would expect of an eighth grader. Dandy Dan, played by Will Fisher boasted the best splurge gun yet as his gal Louella, Caitlin Denny, looked on and comically controlled his gang including a great little actor, Mike Romano who played Doodle. Oscar DeVelt was well played by Taylor Carlson as he auditioned acts for the Bijoux theater, cutting them off with a curt “Next...” before they were done, delighted audiences with his portrayal. Lena, Briana Whitehead, was not to be upstaged by Oscar’s auditionees and sang a song backed up by the chorus girls that would rival anything in a high school show. Rounding out the music portion of the show was a touching portrayal of Fizzy, a janitor at Fat Sam’s who wants badly to be a dancer but never gets an audition because he promises it will be tomorrow. Vicki Hartt, a seventh grader, as Fizzy brought tears to one’s eyes as she sang the song, “Tomorrow” expressing her hopes and frustrations. Of course the show would’ve been a mere shell without the two gangs to move along all of the action. Boasting 55 students from grades 6, 7, and 8, they uproariously sang, danced, and splurged their way into the audiences’ hearts.
Of course a show like “Bugsy Malone” takes tremendous work by its production staff who deserve some applause themselves. Jessica Williams, a junior, professionally wrote and taught the choreographed numbers for the show as well as acting as a student director. Sarah Barnard, a junior, acted as the head stage manager flawlessly engineering props, her high school stage crew, and entrances, as well as providing student direction. Many thanks go to Miss Angie Michaliga and her students for making the splurge guns, Mrs. Phyllis Caffrey for providing costumes, and to Mr. Mark Harvey for his help with the recognizable silhouettes on the flats. Finally a great thank you to Mr. Jeff Burkett assisted by Mrs. Rebecca Williams who brought it all together, always teaching students that, “If they believe they can, they can.”
Pictured (l-r) are: Justin Ruhf, Kyle Hinkley, Alex Eastman, Jessica Briar, Mike Donato, Christy Fassett, Joe Truskolaski, Michelle Batson, Rhonda Arnold, Shelley Benson, Mrs. Davis. Absent from photo: Sarah Gregory.
Mrs. Alice M. Davis, Vocational Director of the Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center, is proud to announce the SCCTC Students of the Month for October, 2004.
Thursdays are made for holiday music as the Elk Lake Music Department proudly presents the winter concert season with the following schedule.
Junior High Band and Chorus Concert will be held Thursday, December 9 at 7:30 p.m.
Fifth and Sixth Grade Band and Chorus Concert will be held Thursday, December 16.
Jaime Benson, of Susquehanna, a senior majoring in psychology and sociology at Syracuse University, has been selected as a college marshal for the University’s College of Arts and Sciences.
College marshals are selected annually by each of Syracuse University’s 12 schools and colleges on the basis of academic achievement, involvement in student organizations, and campus and community service. College marshals have the honor of leading the procession of graduates into the commencement ceremony, which will be held on May 15 in the Carrier Dome.
Kendal Stead, granddaughter of Frederic and Betty Boerner, Susquehanna, is spending the fall semester studying at Volgograd University in Volograd, Russia, through Mansfield University’s Division of International Programs Abroad. Students are studying Russian language and literature, international business, and a wide range of liberal arts. Students live on campus and travel to St. Petersburg, Moscow and other points of interest while in Russia. Kendal, the daughter of Ken and Jeri Stead, Binghamton, NY, is a senior at Mansfield University majoring in public relations, mass communications, and philosophy and will be graduating December, 2004.
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