This afternoon my best friend Sarah and I attended Parkland High School’s matinee performance of Les Miserables. Stuck up in the balcony (the nose bleed section), we couldn’t actually see the faces of the thespians, but their voices were loud and clear as they belted out the familiar tunes from the Tony Award-winning musical.
While all the students were wonderful, I was particularly impressed with freshman Morgan Reilley’s portrayal of Eponine. She flawlessly sung her way through “On My Own”, hitting every note with near perfection. In fact, Morgan’s singing could give the gal on the original Broadway recording a run for her vocal chords. She can expect a FREDDY Award nomination and perhaps a Tony Award in the future. According to the program, Morgan has already made her stage debut in NYC.
Trevor James, a senior, also did a fantastic job as the Jean Valjean, the protagonist of the story. His vocals were spot on–probably what Michael Crawford sounded like when he was a senior in high school. Like so many others, I’ve always had a soft spot on my heart for Eponine. Every cast member did an excellent job and the students should be proud of their performance. Here’s big shout out to stage crew! You did a great job moving that set around!
But what I really wanted to see was the set because I know that the charge artist, junior Ann Marie Krulick, has a bright future ahead of her. Having been gifted in art since she was but a wee lass, Ann Marie took her talents to the “big stage” when she got to high school, not only working crew but helping with the creation of the set. Oh, yeah, did I mention I was her junior high youth leader? And that her sister, Mary Ellen, is one of my close friends? So, yeah, I’m a bit biased, but it’s all true. If Ann Marie and her crew don’t get nominated for a FREDDY, then there’s no justice in the valley!
Ann Marie, I think you deserve a FREDDY, but all I could afford to get you was a carnation and this blog post. You are absolutely beautiful inside and out and your beauty flows forth into your creations. I’m so glad I can say I knew you “way back when” because I have no doubt that you’ll find those neon lights VERY BRIGHT on Broadway. 🙂
If you can’t get enough Ann Marie (because who can?) check out her stage debut on this video from her induction into the International Thespian Society. It’s “thrilling”! Ann Marie makes one great zombie.