Pittsburg High School Theatre presents “Urinetown, the Musical”
On Jan. 2 at the Memorial Auditorium, 60 cast, crew, and band members will perform an encore of “Urinetown, the Musical,” which judges selected for the main stage at the Kansas Thespian Festival. It will be open to the public at no charge; Friends of PHS Performing Arts will accept donations at the door to help offset the cost of travel to the festival.
What makes the “dress rehearsal” performance unique is that it will be staged in one day. Following the last performance of the regularly-scheduled “Urinetown” production at PHS on Nov. 19, cast and crew stored costumes, wigs, makeup, props, and carefully dismantled set pieces for storage in hopes that they would get word from the statewide festival directors that their show had been chosen for performance at the event by judges who travel the circuit of other high school contenders all fall.
Director Greg Shaw, music director Cooper Neil, and vocal director Susan Laushman received word earlier this month that the show was one of three chosen to perform on the main stage at the three-day state festival, which runs Jan. 4-6 in Wichita, Kansas, at the Century II Convention Center. It draws more than 1,500 students, teachers, and chaperones from across the state.
Shaw has planned their Jan. 2 dress rehearsal to provide them a dry-run experience that closely mimics the State Festival performance experience: On the last day of their Christmas break, they’ll arrive at Memorial Auditorium — an intentionally different space than they were used to at PHS — to begin load-in at 7 a.m. and will work throughout the day to prepare for the show that night. They’ll even take union breaks and lunch hour, as that’s what will be required of them in Wichita, Shaw noted. Following the 7 p.m. performance, they’ll once again carefully disassemble the set and store everything for transport to Wichita on Jan. 3.
PHS’s production will open the festival the evening of Jan. 4. They’ll travel to Wichita from PHS the afternoon of Jan. 3, the day classes resume for the spring semester, and the next morning at 7 a.m. will begin load-in of the set, costumes, and props. They’ll work all day to erect the set, create the lighting and sound design, do makeup and mic checks, then perform. After the show, they must disassemble everything and clear the stage so that the following day, the next high school to perform has access.
PHS Theatre and Friends of PHS Performing Arts hope to fill Memorial Auditorium as a send-off to this special group of performers who are representing Pittsburg at the state level! Please make plans to come support the Dragons!
Those who would like to make a donation in advance of Jan. 2 may do so by mailing it to 127 Westfield Rd., Pittsburg, KS 66762, c/o Brad Stefanoni.