Oakdale High School Drama Department is ready to once again wow audiences and remind the community of its unbridled talent.
This year Drama teacher/director Bryan Mills has chosen the musical, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat to showcase the talent of 40 OHS students, as well as 20 elementary students. A total of 10 OHS students have worked on Crew and 70 of their classmates worked as Set Builders. Performances will be hosted Friday, Oct. 2 and Saturday, Oct. 3 at 7 p.m. with a 2 p.m. performance offered on Sunday, Oct. 4. All performances will be hosted at the Oakdale High School theater. Tickets are $8 each and available at the OHS Business office. Tickets will be sold at the door on availability only. The theater seats 200. Attendees are encouraged to buy tickets in advance.
Based on the Biblical tale from the book of Genesis, the story is based on the “coat of many colors” belonging to Joseph. The favorite of his father’s sons, Joseph is believed to be a boy blessed with prophetic dreams.
Leading the cast as Joseph is OHS Senior Jonathon Hintz.
“I started my freshman year,” Jonathon shared of drama. “My first production was Return to Calamity Gulch. I played the town drunk. This is quite the contrast to that role.”
Cast members Devon Doss as Pharaoh and Emily Hudson as Narrator, chuckle at the comparison of the two roles.
Audiences will best remember OHS Junior Emily as the lead part from the spring production of Hairspray. Commanding the stage as lead performer Tracy Turnblad, Emily and cast had the audience on their feet for the Spring 2015 musical.
“I’ve been in drama since 2008-ish,” the petite actress shared. “This theater is where I started. I was an understudy for Annie and an orphan.
“After having that role, I could see as long as I put myself out there I could play any role if I do the work,” Emily added of her Hairspray role.
Recognizing the stark difference between the lead and narrator, Emily shared she’s equally excited about her most recent part, noting the variety of vocal range as a challenge she happily embraces.
Sophomore Devon Doss’s character of Pharaoh depicted as Elvis, is guaranteed to give the audience a chuckle or two.
“I personally love Elvis in the ‘50s,” Devon said. “Probably why I wanted to try out for this part so much.”
Not new to the stage, Devon first stepped onto the stage in fifth grade and has stayed active in theater ever since.
“You make new friends all the time, because you get to work with people you don’t normally hang out with,” the sophomore said, “and you put it all together.”
“I really like being able to express myself in more ways than just talking throughout the day,” Emily said of her love of theater and the OHS Drama department.
The three actors admitted to being unfamiliar with the musical first made popular by Lloyd Webber and Rice in the late 1960s.
“I watched the movie a few days before auditions,” Jonathon said. “I read the Bible story as a child.
“I think that if you’re a main character you have to be aware that the audience is watching you 100 percent at all times,” he continued. “I really love seeing all the hard work the cast is putting into it and seeing it all come together and knowing wow, we did all of this. We made this happen.”
“You don’t have to be a hard core Christian to want to see this show,” Emily noted of the show’s entertainment value. “It’s more than a Bible story. It’s entertainment.”
The three cast members each agree, regardless of the production, it is the unique bond and teamwork which continues to bring them back to theater.
“A lot of us in this play are a lot closer than we were in the beginning,” Jonathon said. “There are a lot of new faces coming in and it’s so exciting to see how we’re all together.”
“Seeing all the new people,” Emily said of the freshman cast members, “with all the aspects being used, it makes me want to talk to them. It makes others want to talk to them and we just grow as a group.”