Dance Your Heart Out


Karina Kosmala and Shelsea Reynoso

The hit movie that most of us grew up with and still love is finally coming to Leyden. Leyden Theater presents “High School Musical,” where we follow the story of Troy, Gabriella, and the students of East High with the “jocks, brainiacs, thespians, and skater dudes”. They deal with typical high school conflicts, such as, relationship troubles, differences between friends, and extracurricular activities, that can get pretty hectic and cause anxiety.

Like last year’s Annie, High School Musical is a familiar story, but it is different from previous Leyden musicals. According to Director Ms. Stacy Cunningham, “HSM is set in the current time period and almost all of the characters are HS (High School) students, which makes it easier to relate for our students (most musicals have very few HS student characters)!”

Of course, the story on stage will not be identical to the movie version. “With any live production, you can’t recreate a movie for a lot of reasons, the most obvious being the set – movies are taped in several locations, live productions are all on the stage – the stage becomes different locations, but it’s not like the movies,”Cunningham explained. The live cast includes 60 students, so “staging that many bodies can be challenging, but we have a GREAT team and we will make it work, ” she added.

Carlos Torral, who plays the lead role of Troy Bolton, has previous experience despite being a freshman. He played the lead role in Aladdin in eighth grade and participated in sixth grade in his school’s Annie and Beauty and the Beast productions.

He said,“Balancing school and rehearsal is the toughest part. I get home from school very tired, but I still have to run my lines and learn the songs.” However, he has a system of mastering his struggles:“Running my lines and listening to the music before bed has been my routine and it helps a lot. The best part is that the soundtrack is fantastic, so I enjoy listening to the music.”

The struggles and challenges of any production strengthens the cast members according to Ms. Cunningham. “They will come out being better communicators, stronger team players, better performers, gain confidence, friends, and memories that last a lifetime,” she said.Come out to see Leyden’s Theater Production, High School Musical, (not your typical musical), on October 30 at 7 p.m., October 31 at 2 p.m., November 1 and 2 at 7 p.m. Be reminded that you need to pre-pay your tickets.