High school drama program Timberline is hard at work on its first live performance since the pandemic, bringing audiences to the Swamp, Dragon’s Keep and Duloc in their adaptation of the musical Shrek.
Most people know the story, Shrek is about an ogre and his sidekick Donkey who set out on a mission to rescue Princess Fiona from a fire-breathing dragon and deliver her to her future husband, little Lord Farquaad , in order to save his swamp. . However, Shrek and Donkey notice that the princess disappears every night.
Drama teacher Jana MacFarlane said she had been interested in the production since she first heard about it.
“I wanted to do Shrek ever since I saw Shrek,” MacFarlane said. “Normally, when you do a show, we spend three days a week listening to these songs, and it’s very easy to get tired of Shrek. Shrek is the one I’ve been listening to for a few years now and I never get tired of it.
“We also have a lot of really strong kids this year who fit those parts and give them a chance to shine,” she said.
The show marks the first time the class has performed in front of a live audience since the pandemic. Their spring performances for the past two years have been streamed live, which is a different experience for those on stage.
“Last year was so weird,” said 12th grader Michaela Veary, who plays Lord Farquaad on the show. “They told you to stay there and take a break after your song, but there’s no applause… there’s nothing.”
That being said, they have no qualms about getting in front of people.
“It’s live theater, so clap if you like something and laugh if you think it’s funny,” said student Ryver Santos Cegnar, who plays Shrek. “It really helps the cast lift their spirits.”
One thing about a show based on a movie (based on a book) about fantastic creatures from fairyland is that the costumes are very elaborate. Musical director Céline Ouellette has been hard at work sewing costumes since last May, and the results are really there. While the shimmer got a preview of the costumes, some of the big pieces of the show are going to be left to surprise the audience.
“There are huge amounts of costumes,” MacFarlane said. “We borrowed a few from the Comox Valley Youth Music Center (CYMC) when they did a few years ago. Many of them were created just for this production. Our musical director Céline Ouellette single-handedly made all the costumes except those we borrowed. She works non-stop on her sewing machine.
The show will take place at the Timberline Theater on April 22, 23 and May 5, 6, 7 at 7 p.m. There will also be a matinee performance on April 24 at 1 p.m. Tickets are available at www.showtix4u.com/events/timberlinesecondary.
Arts & EntertainmentTheatre