“Hello Dolly!” spreads the love at Polytech High School

WOODSIDE — Filled with energy, playful humor and a romantic touch, “Hello Dolly!” will be performed at Polytech High School in Woodside today and Saturday night at 7 and Sunday at 2 p.m.

The classic Broadway musical is about “a matchmaker that has fallen in love with one of her clients and what she does is she kind of manipulates a lot of different situations to happen so that she gets her client to fall in love with her in the end. It’s a beautiful ending,” said musical director Maxwell Dabby.

The romantic comedy sets in motion a series of events that is continuously putting the odds in Dolly’s favor for the man she wishes to marry, half-millionaire Horace Vandergelder’s — all the while matching up other couples within his circle.

Director John Link chose the production because it falls around the same time that Bette Midler is bringing it back to Broadway.

Those performing in the show consist of junior Alyx Wilson as Dolly Levi and senior Logan Williams as Horace Vandergelder.

Normally roles are assigned based on the actor’s ability to portray the character, but this year the students were faced with the task of going outside their comfort zones to meet the character descriptions

“For me in particular, my character is very outgoing and bold and I’m not that kind of person so that may be the same case for other people,” Alys said.

Alyx says she has a passion for the theater and hopes to make it her career.

“She (Dolly) sings in the song ‘Before the Parade Passes By’ that she really has a goal that she wants to attain. I’d say I want to obtain that goal too because I would like to be an actual actress outside of school, so that is the goal I am trying to get to,” she said.

Logan has participated in this year’s school production as well as the 2015 Children’s Theatre Inc., production of “Shrek: The Musical” as Lord Farquaad.

Playing the charming Ambrose and despairing Ermengarde are junior Ben Kaplan and senior Robin Cox. The comedic duo of Cornelius Hackl and Barnaby Tucker are played by senior Ronnie Griffin and senior Amanda Finney.

Senior Jane Allen and junior Devin Ott play the roles of Irene Molloy and Minnie Fay. The comically eccentric woman Ernestina Money is portrayed by senior Hannah Sturgis. Along with the many characters is an ensemble of dancers and singers, ranging from freshmen to seniors.

“Hello Dolly!” continues a musical tradition for Polytech, from having “Mary Poppins” fly in their 2015 production to the student-directed choreography in the 2014 production of “Pippin.”

For “Hello Dolly!,” Polytech is taking it one step further.

“We’re doing so many things different with this show that we haven’t done before. Like we’re building out the stage for one. We’re having two little blocks that we can extend outwards. We’re having a huge staircase. We’re adding a lot of construction that will make the show a bit more magical,” said Alyx.

A couple of weeks before the show’s opening, Mr. Link was hospitalized after an accident.

In the grand tradition of the show must go on, other parents, students, and teachers have made it possible to continue the play. That list includes Mr. Dabby, parent Christy Stafford, staff member Jason Carpenter, juniors Nicole Bartkiewicz and Timothy Witmer,.

Mr. Dabby, the music director at Polytech High School, is directing the live student orchestra and has overseen much of this year’s production

“Definitely just come and see it. It’s a romantic comedy, it’s a hoot. It’s fun for everybody.” Mr. Dabby said.

He said the show is for all ages and backgrounds.

“It’s really for everyone to have a lot of fun,” he said.

Admission to the show is $5 for students and $8 for adults. This year, Polytech’s culinary students will be hosting a dinner of lasagna prior to tonight’s show at 5 p.m. Admission for dinner and the show is $25 for adults and $15 for students.

Tickets are available at polytechpanthers.com in the bulletin board section and also at the door. Both cash and credit will be accepted.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Torie Seagraves is a senior broadcast media student at Polytech High School and a cast member of “Hello Dolly!”

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