J-DHS Students Showcase Their Talents In a Student-Run Musical

Band Geeks flyer

A bunch of band geeks will be putting on a musical! Wait, no. A bunch of students will be putting on a musical! Still not right? A bunch of students will be putting on Band Geeks, the musical? Yes! Students from high schools all over Syracuse will be putting on a hilarious musical called Band Geeks, from May 24st to June 1st. The musical has been completely directed by students, many from our very own Jamesville-DeWitt High School. These diligent students have been rehearsing for the past few weeks in various locations.

The cast rehearsing. Taken by Maddi Brown, CNY At Rise photographer

J-DHS senior Nancy O’Connor is musical director for Band Geeks. In her own words, O’Connor describes musical directing as teaching the actors their music, working with the pit orchestra on their music, playing piano for the show, and conducting the show. O’Connor said that she loved the multitasking element of musical directing and that it’s been a very rewarding experience. “There is something magical about a group of students coming together with the common goal of putting on a musical,” she said. “Band Geeks is an upbeat musical about a group of high school students in a ragtag, financially-threatened marching band. The students want to prove themselves and the importance of their band, and the musical also explores several relationships among the students,” is how O’Connor described the show.

“There is something magical about a group of students coming together with the common goal of putting on a musical,” O’Connor said.

J-DHS senior Olivia Frison DeAngelis is director for the show. She’s only been director for something small in the past, so making the jump to directing a musical has been difficult but rewarding. “Despite these challenges, I’m now entering the most rewarding stage of being a director, as it is truly magical to see all your ideas come together, thanks to the support of so many passionately involved people who have helped make them a reality,” she said. The only advice Frison DeAngelis has for anyone going to see the show, is to laugh along as you compare your own high school experience to that of the musical. “A very talented group of individuals has come together for this show, and I have every confidence that opening night is going to go great,” she concluded.

Photo taken by Maddi Brown

J-DHS social studies teacher, Jordan Berger, will be playing a diligent, dedicated teacher and band director, Mr.Hornsby, who feels he does not get the credit he deserves. Mr. Berger who is usually the director of productions, said that it’s been “An incredible experience” to be on the other side of things as an actor, as he hasn’t acted in a play since he was in high school. Mr. Berger feels that the JD students directing the show are fantastic, and getting to work with them has been very special. “It’s really cool to have students be in charge… they do such an amazing job being prepared and motivating the cast and crew each and every day,” he said. Although Mr. Berger is both nervous and excited for the first performance, he wants anyone going to see it to know that it’s relatable for all ages and has super catchy music.

It’s really cool to have students be in charge and they do such an amazing job being prepared and motivating the cast and crew each and every day,” said Mr. Berger.

Several more students from J-DHS have contributed to the show. Sadie Fridley will be playing Laura; Bianca Lucas will be playing in the ensemble; Allison Virgo will be playing the drums; Greg Tillman will be playing the electric bass; Caleb Porter will be playing percussion; Colby Porter will be playing clarinet; Wyatt Weldum will be playing trombone 1; Max Oppedisano will be playing trombone 2; Olivia Budelman will be playing trumpet 1; Kelvin Huynh will be playing trumpet 2; Matt Scibilia will be playing saxophone; Emma Clardy is the costume designer, Sam Aitken is the assistant director; and Ben Virgo is the technical director.

Come watch this hilarious musical May 24th at 7:30 pm, May 25th at 7:30 pm, May 26th at 2:00pm, May 31th at 7:30 pm, and Jun 1th at 2:00 pm. The shows will be located at Catherine Cummings Theatre, Cazenovia College, 16 Lincklaen Street Cazenovia, NY, 13035. Tickets are on sale now, costing $15 for adults and $10 for students on AtRiseProductions.com.

Nina Dermody, '22
One of the Culture Editors at RamPage. When she's not running around on the soccer field, she's probably laughing really obnoxiously!