Written by Emily Thouless, Student Journalist
Watch out Annie! St. Peter’s Catholic Secondary School in Barrie has a new hit on their hands with their latest musical production, Elf Junior! The show, which ran December 1 - 3, was filled with hilarity and hijinx which left children and adults alike filled with Christmas cheer. The musical is, of course, based on the movie of the same name (minus the junior), and follows the story of Buddy, a human raised by elves in the North Pole. After learning about his roots, Buddy decides to head to New York City just in time for Christmas, to find his true family and spread Christmas cheer for all to hear!
This cheer was the core of the play, and it kept not only the audience entertained, but also gave the cast and crew inspiration during long, tiring and stressful rehearsal days. Incredibly, the musical was ready to present in just a little over two months, and involved over one hundred and thirty dedicated students and staff members.
Ms. Mcdonald and Mrs. Hevia, the acting and musical directors of the play, expressed their gratitude to everyone involved. Mrs Hevia, who rose to the challenge of training students, some of whom had never sung a note in public, to become quality stage singers in just two months. She expressed her wishes for the group saying, “My hope for them is that they discover a life long love of singing and continue to use the skills I’ve taught them for the rest of their lives.”
Ms. Mcdonald, the director of the play, expressed her gratitude to everyone involved. “We’re really proud of the students and what they’ve produced, and I just hope they feel proud about what they’ve created.” Ms. Mcdonald went on to explain the challenges of preparing a play in such a short time frame, and continued to express that it wasn’t only the quality of the final production that she worried about - she also wanted to make sure that the cast and crew were having a fantastic time getting to the finish line.
Fortunately, Ms. Mcdonald and Mrs. Hevia needn’t have worried at all. The musical was a huge hit with audiences and the cast and crew had a great time in the weeks leading up to the performances.
Grade 11 student Alex, one of the two actors who portrayed Buddy on stage, expressed his enjoyment saying, “My favourite part was fully realizing the character and having a ton of fun playing Buddy...”. Many of the other cast members had similar accolades for the production. Cast member Britney not only expressed her enjoyment, but also called the musical “life changing” in her experience as an actress. Another student involved in the production, Grade 11 student Shelley, agrees about her experience on stage saying, “I think as actors we needed to get into a certain mindset for the play, but working on stage and doing a lot of research really helped bring the production together.”
The musical was a wonderful way to kickstart the Christmas season, and was the perfect blend of comedy for people of all ages. The quality of the production was spectacular, the actors fantastic, and the energy was just astounding. This was the perfect way to remind everyone what having Christmas spirit is all about - it shows us how to celebrate our faith in the best way possible. The play taught us to not only how to believe in others, but in ourselves as well.