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updated: 4/28/2011 10:31 AM

Lake Park teacher says goodbye with 'Guys and Dolls'

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There are a lot of big numbers behind Lake Park High School's production of "Guys and Dolls" this weekend at its East Campus.

Yes, yes, of course there will be musical numbers. But a few figures are also key to bringing the show to life.

The most important number this weekend is 20 -- as in 20 years. That's how long Mary Gibson has been teaching choir and leading soloists and ensembles at the Roselle school.

"Guys and Dolls" will be the vocal director's final performance before she retires this spring.

In the 1990s, Gibson not only served as the choral director for a production of "Guys and Dolls," she even appeared as leading lady Sarah Brown in two staff performances.

"Therefore, it is very fitting that Gibson is saying goodbye to Lake Park's drama and music departments with this year's spring musical," said spokeswoman Jennifer Jungel.

The popular Broadway fable is told against the backdrop of New York City. Smooth-talking gangster Sky Masterson falls in love with Sarah Brown, leader of the Save-a-Soul mission. Sarah tries to resist his charms, even while being whisked away to an exotic Havana nightclub. Meanwhile, Nathan Detroit tries to avoid death-by-marriage to Miss Adelaide, his fiancee of 14 years.

Now to get a feel for all the other makings of this show, here's a by-the-numbers look:

25: Musicians playing the score.

$7: Cost of general admission. Admission is free for students and seniors, and $5 for non-Lake Park students.

81: Cast members including leads, extras and dancers.

'50s: Decade in which "Guys and Dolls" is set.

10: Crew members.

And a few other numerals to note: Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, April 29 and 30, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 1. A public reception for Gibson will follow the Sunday show. For details or tickets, call (630) 295-5313.