NICEVILLE, Fla. – A musical classic, tweaked for teens, is coming to Niceville.
The Niceville High School (NHS) Theatre Department is presenting “Chicago: Teen Edition” beginning March 31 at the NHS auditorium. The community is invited to attend.
According to Ritchie Jackson, NHS Theatre Director, the musical is the biggest show ever produced at the high school.
“We have spent just over $10,000 dollars on it, and one look at our massive two-story set, gorgeous costumes, wigs, and Fosse-inspired choreography, will tell you why,” said Jackson.
“Directing this show has long been a dream of mine, and after our success last year with our massive production of ‘A Chorus Line,’ I knew that the time was right to tackle this musical classic.”
Performances are on Friday, March 31, Saturday, April 1, Friday, April 7, and Saturday, April 8.
Shows are at 7 p.m. on Fridays and at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturdays.
VIP tickets are $20 and include early seating, a free bag of popcorn, and a bottle of water. General admission is $15. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for VIPs and 6:40 p.m. for general admission ticket holders.
Tickets are available here.
“Chicago” tells the story of Roxie Hart and Velma Kelly and the headline-grabbing murders that propel them into media stardom in 1920s Chicago newspapers. The show examines the fickle nature of notoriety and fame, abuse of the press, the use of the justice system, con jobs, corruption, and greed.
The show’s music is by John Kander, and its lyrics are by Fred Ebb. The book is by Bob Fosse and Fred Ebb.
“Chicago: Teen Edition” has been edited for teen audiences but still reflects its Broadway namesake closely with its jazz-filled score, storyline, and 1920s setting. The show’s more adult content has been tamed for teen audiences and older, organizers said.
The theatre department at NHS has exploded in the last few years, said Jackson.
“After our tremendous success with ‘Mamma Mia!’ in 2019, the student body and our community became aware of the college-level quality productions that we do at our school. High school theatre at NHS is not the high school theatre that you remember from your days in high school,” said Jackson.
“Our department’s mission statement is ‘Bringing theatrical excellence to the stage,’ and we take that mission seriously.”
According to Jackson, the NHS theatre department strives to give audiences the highest quality theatrical experience and the best learning opportunity for students.
“We are very proud of our college-level productions and always seek to raise the bar with each new show,” said Jackson.
“We hope that even more of our community will come out and see the amazing things that NHS Theatre is doing so that our audiences will grow even larger. We came very close to selling out for ‘A Chorus Line,’ and I would love for these incredibly hard-working and talented kids to have a full house to perform to with this show.”
Nicci Fahle choreographs the show. NHS seniors Ashley Decker and Avery Cleveland serve as co-vocal directors. Owen Pogany is the technical director and co-production designer.
The cast includes McKenna Mau as Roxie Hart, Jaiden Strange as Velma Kelly, Kyler Bess as Billy Flynn, Addison Starett as Matron Mama Morton, and Ashley Decker plays Mary Sunshine.
An ensemble of over 20 students helps round out the cast.