The J-DHS musical was a complete showing of the amount of talent that J-D has to offer. They put on a production of High School Musical 2: The Musical, originally a Disney Channel original movie and a sequel to High School Musical. Although the J-DHS musical wasn’t able to happen in person this year, the cast and crew members still put on an unforgettable show. They filmed themselves performing at different locations, which allowed it to feel as if we were watching a movie-musical. They used recordings of the cast’s singing on top of the video, so it was still the J-DHS cast performing the songs, just not live. This way of filming clearly posed a challenge, but they were able to pull it off.
The High School Musical franchise has been around since 2006, so many kids grew up watching the movies. With this movie being so iconic to many of our childhoods, there was clear excitement about this production by the cast. The classic characters of Troy Bolton and Gabriella Montez are hard roles to fill, seeing as they were originated by Zac Efron and Vanessa Hudgens. Two seniors, Emily Ninestein and Shamus Endries, took on these challenging roles. This being Endries’ first musical ever, he delivered with enthusiasm and creativity. Ninestein, previously being in productions at J-DHS gave an amazing performance as Gabriella and showed her musical abilities through the beautiful music in the show. Senior Kyra McDevitt was given the role of sassy rich girl Sharpay Evans, the villain of this plotline.
This cast was jam packed with talented individuals ready to show off their talent through fun dance numbers. “I Don’t Dance” was among some of the most creative performances, mainly because they were able to film it on an actual baseball field, like it is in the movie. In a normal year, they would have had to figure out a way to simulate a baseball field on stage. Other fun numbers include “What Time Is It,” where they were able to film around different parts of the school, similar to how the movie was staged. They were even able to film one of the scenes at one of the cast member’s pools because one of the songs is supposed to be performed poolside at a country club! This number, “Fabulous,” was an extremely entertaining number because it showed off lots of the talent. The cast got to show off their singing, acting, and dancing skills when performing this show. The J-DMS also got to show off their musical skills with a production of High School Musical: The Musical, which was similarly filmed. Many of the youngsters showed their talent through dance numbers and songs as well. They also did a great job for being such young thespians.
These incredibly talented people should be proud of what they accomplished and this should only make them even more excited for what the future holds for them. They did an amazing job with the cards they were dealt and the production value was impressive. The idea of making a movie-musical type production brought a different quality to the musical and made it very enjoyable to watch. Even when posed with challenges, such as a global pandemic, the J-DHS theater department was able to produce an incredible production of High School Musical 2: The Musical.