Forty-nine students will try to keep the beat going beginning April 7 and through to the 12 for the Raymond High School Show Choir spring production of “You Can’t Stop the Beat.”
All different types of dance will be featured in this uptempo musical production that features 18 different songs and “quite a lot of choreography,” said director Sue Williams.
“We try to make every single kid shine. So there are dance solos and local solos, but we have a special for everyone,” she explained.
Although show choir isn’t an auditioned musical, those who wish to have a solo must audition for their part. This year 35 students tried out for solos – which is about the same as in years past, as were the 25 students who tried out for special dance solos.
From the 1950s all the way into the 80s the show choir takes their audience through intriguing pieces like “Misty Mountains,” – a song from the Hobbit, arranged by Raymond’s own Carol Dahl.
“We couldn’t find an arrangement for it so Carol arranged it for us. She put it together with instruments and everything and it’s just amazing . . . I think Hobbit people are going to love it,” Williams said. “We have ‘the New Girl in Town,’ that’s kind of the 60s and we have ‘the Beat Goes,’ which is a medley, a big one and it covers a whole realm of music and then we have ‘Touch the Sky’ which is celtic and ‘the Best Years of Your Life’ which is Jamaican, so we have quite a bit of different dances.”
Stuck in rehearsal mode since January, students have been working hard towards their debut on April 7 at the Broadway Theatre. Showtimes will carry on until the 12, with all showing at 7:30 p.m., nightly – other than the Saturday matinee which has been changed to 2 p.m.
Proceeds from the show will go towards the students’ trip to the United States this year, where they will first visit and perform at the Morningside Elementary School in Great Falls, and then travel to the Northtown Mall for a performance. Following the mall the group then heads to Silverwood Theme Park for another performance prior to their big reward, tickets to see the Broadway-famous play “Wicked.”
“We are hoping that watching Wicked will give (the students) insight to the excitment you can pull from an audience and to help them be better entertainers,” she said of the benefits to the trip.
“Also when we take our show on the road every kid has something they’re responsible for – like a microphone or costume – each one is responsible for something. We can put our show up in half an hour to 45 minutes and the kids do it all, us leaders just sort of stand there and point, so it shows them how to take it on the road too.”
The group hopes for a sold out show every evening to help fundraise for their big mystery trip next year. Which is also why each student is responsible for selling 25 tickets.
“I think it’s going to be a great show, I don’t think I have ever seen this much variety of music,” Williams said of the spring production.
If you’d like to purchase tickets for the musical please do so at the door or through Carole Court at 403-752-3472.