Kristin Voris is stage director and choreographer for "Bye Bye Birdie"; Megan Drahos is the producer, as well as music and vocal director.
Q. Why did you choose "Bye Bye Birdie" as the Rosary/Marmion fall play?
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Megan Drahos. "Bye Bye Birdie" was selected because it is a fun, upbeat show with many female roles for the talented young women of Rosary. It is a show that is still relevant today because even modern young kids may idolize a teen star like Birdie.
Q. Briefly summarize the plot -- what is this play about?
Kristin Voris. This popular musical is a commentary on the teenage obsession with singers such as Elvis and the rock 'n' roll movement. As teenage idol Conrad Birdie is about to be inducted into the army, he visits the small town of Sweet Apple, Ohio to bestow "one last kiss" on one lucky teenage girl representing his adoring fan club.
Q. What have been some of the challenges in putting together this production?
Drahos. One of the challenges has been the time frame for putting on such a large-scale production. Auditions happened shortly after school started and then we only had about eight weeks to put the vocals, blocking, choreography, and the set/tech elements together.
Q. What have been some of the most rewarding aspects of putting together this show? Is there anything that has surprised you?
Voris. The most rewarding part has been watching our Mae Peterson and Conrad Birdie characters come to life. These two actors have really worked hard -- as have all the kids, really and truly -- to step far outside of the comfort zone to take on challenging characters. I am not surprised by this though, as I have nothing but faith in the talent and ability of the young women and men of Rosary and Marmion.
Drahos. Since it is my first year at Rosary, one of the most rewarding parts has been working with this wonderful group of students and witnessing the growth over the past two months. I have enjoyed seeing the vocalists and instrumentalists take the pieces to the next level. Finally, it's been great to see their hard work rewarded when set pieces, lights, and sound were added.
Q. What makes this show unique?
Drahos. This show is special for me because it is my first musical at Rosary. It's also the first time I am the lead vocal director, as well as pit director and producer, for a high school show. It has been a great experience, but it wouldn't have been possible without the help of the production team and the parent volunteers.
If you go: "Bye Bye Birdie" will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 8-10, at Rosary High School, 901 N. Edgelawn Drive, Aurora. Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for students and senior citizens.
Preshow special events are planned for Friday and Saturday. The Rosary Diner will be serving hamburgers, hot dogs, chips and root beer floats on Friday night beginning at 6 p.m. for $10. Saturday night features a "Taste and See" event with wine tasting and hors d'oeuvres in the school library for $30. Both are fundraisers sponsored by the Rosary Fine Arts Boosters to fund already-installed auditorium improvements, including lights, sound, a new grand piano, and remodeled backstage dressing rooms.
For tickets or details, visit rosaryhis.com/musical or call (630) 896-0831.