Sequim high-schoolers to open 'Footloose' tonight
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Jim Heintz
Bailey Bryan and Austin Brock play Ariel and Ren, would-be sweethearts in “Footloose.” The musical opens tonight for a three-week run at the Sequim High School Performing Arts Center, 601 N. Sequim Ave.

By Diane Urbani de la Paz
Peninsula Daily News

SEQUIM — Dancing is banned in this fictional town.

But we have 55 youngsters poised to go on stage in “Footloose,” the operetta opening tonight at the Sequim High School Performing Arts Center, so that ban is not going to last.

Robin Hall, the director of the show ready for a three-week run, is about as excited as the cast of teenage actors, who have been rehearsing two hours daily for weeks now.

“Although this musical is based on the Kevin Bacon version of 'Footloose' [from 1984], it has much more,” said Hall.

Along with hit songs like “Footloose,” “Let's Hear It for the Boy,” “Holding Out for a Hero” and “Almost Paradise,” the Sequim High version has Austin Brock, 17, playing the lead role of Ren McCormack; his sister, Hailey Brock, 18, playing schoolmate Rusty; and Bailey Bryan, a freshman, playing Ren's would-be sweetheart, Ariel.

“The best thing about this show is our principal actors,” Hall said.

“Their voices are amazing.”

And for a show about no dancing, “there are a lot of great dance numbers.”

Show times for “Footloose” at the Sequim High School Performing Arts Center, 601 N. Sequim Ave., are:

■ 6 p.m. Thursdays starting tonight through May 16.

■ 7 p.m. Fridays through May 17.

■ 2 p.m. this Saturday only.

■ 7 p.m. Saturdays, May 11 and 18.

Premium tickets are $12, while general seating for adults is $10, with $8 for seniors and students with an Associated Student Body card.

Also, $25 family passes are available for all Thursday shows and for this Saturday's matinee.

All of this singing and dancing serves the story of Ren, a kid from Chicago who moves with his mother (played by Olivia Hatton) to a small farming town.

There, the Rev. Shaw Moore (Ben Heintz) has gotten dancing outlawed.

“He does this because his son was killed in a vehicle accident after a wild night that included partying, drinking and dancing,” Hall explained.

Ren has lost someone he loves, too: His father walked out on the family.

Dancing outlawed

Dancing is Ren's creative outlet, so he takes on the town council in hopes of overturning the ban on school dances.

The reverend and Ren are on opposite sides of the issue — and things get interesting when the minister's daughter, Ariel, takes a liking to Ren.

Eventually, Ren, Ariel, the preacher and the rest of the “Footloose” crowd dance and sing their way to the crescendo, and “audiences will not leave disappointed,” Hall promised.

Austin, for his part, said he'd never been in a show like this before. He loves to sing, though, and his enthusiasm landed him a lead role he can relate to, having moved last summer from Phoenix to Sequim.

His favorite moments include his solo “I Can't Stand Still” and his duet with Bailey of “Almost Paradise,” before a curtain lit to look like a star-filled sky.

“It is an absolutely beautiful scene,” added Hall.

To reserve tickets, visit www.SHSoperetta.org, phone 866-967-8167 or visit Sequim High School's main office.

To order family passes, phone 360-460-1432 or email info@SHSoperetta.org.

________

Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5062, or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: May 01. 2013 5:39PM
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