After the productions of “The Odd Couple” by Neil Simon, and “The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe,” Signal Mountain Middle High School closes its 2018-2019 season with Stephen Sondheim’s and James Lapine’s “Into the Woods,” directed by Ruth Farrimond, with vocal direction by Beth DuRoy.
“Into the Woods” is a compilation of several well-known fairytales, like “Little Red Riding Hood,” “Rapunzel,” “Cinderella” and “Jack and the Beanstalk.” The main character, the Baker, on a quest with a wife, encounters other fairy tale characters on their own quests. With a recent movie adaptation and its staple on Broadway, “Into the Woods” is one of the most popular works of musical theatre in the world, and the fourth most produced show in American high schools, according to Dramatics magazine.
“What makes this production unique,” Farrimond says, “is that the cast spans a wide range of experience. We have seniors and juniors with strong acting chops and freshmen, even an eighth grader.” The ensemble of “Into the Woods” is nearly all freshmen, giving the ninth-graders a great opportunity to grow into the department and learn from the upperclassmen. Farrimond says, “I can pull from the more experienced students to role model rehearsal etiquette and practices, yet the newer actors challenge and invigorate the cast,” which gives a “fresh energy” to the show.
“The best part of working in this production,” Farrimond says, “has been collaborating with Beth DuRoy as vocal director. She is a gifted musician and teacher. She makes a real connection with the students and brings out their best.”
“Into the Woods” will be performed at SMMHS on Saturday, May 4, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and on Sunday, May 5 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. The department hopes that these matinees will appeal to our Signal Mountain community supporters. Tickets are $10 for adults, and $7 for students. Come out and support the cast and crew of “Into the Woods!”