Beauty and the Beast behind the scenes, showing March 20-22

A scene from a rehearsal of Beauty and the BeastBe our guest for the first musical production staged in the new Roy Reese Auditorium at Goshen High School, March 20-22.

Four students in the crew of Beauty and the Beast sit at a table in the auditorium.The set is under construction, and cast and crews are working their hearts out to bring you the enchanted world of this beloved classic tale, including all your favorite songs.

The GHS Performing Arts  production of Beauty and the Beast is directed by Molly Lloyd with assistance from Kristen Scully and Hugh Mackay.

Family-entertainment at its best, right here at home, this is a great opportunity to come together as a community and support the arts in Goshen.

Behind the scenes with the cast…

Alex Thurtle’s first musical was Godspell in 11th-grade. Now in her senior year, Alex is playing her dream role, Belle.

“Belle was always my favorite Disney princess so this is a very exciting experience for me,” Alex said. But it’s not the princess side of Belle that draws Alex to her character. “Belle goes through very traumatic experiences for a young person. She’s taken away from her father and her village and locked up in a castle with a monster she could never imagine falling in love with. It’s really a challenging role with a wide range of emotions, and I’ve really enjoyed delving into that complexity.”

As a senior wrapping up her high school career and saying goodbye to her theater community, Alex is also pondering the growing experiences and opportunities afforded to her through drama program.

Senior Kevin Ilardi, another seasoned actor, has played lead roles before but none as challenging as the Beast.

“The biggest challenge is finding the transition from a prideful, greedy and egotistical monster to the person Belle falls in love with,” Kevin said.

With musical theater in his college plans, growing as an actor and learning from the experience of others is always on Kevin’s mind. For this role, he devoted many hours watching videos of other Beauty and the Beast productions, hoping to learn from other actors.

“I feel a sense of responsibility for this role, which is a perfect way to develop an understanding for it.”

Kevin is yet to see his costume but waiting for that additional layer of transformation of his character adds fuel to his creativity.

Kalil Thomas, a senior, is playing Maurice, Belle’s father.

“As a father figure, my character and I are very different so I turned to the example of my father own father to connect with the role,” Kalil said.

The show’s central theme and the nearing conclusion of Kalil’s three-year run with the Drama Club have also been cause for reflection.

“The whole show is about seeing beyond the surface, and it forces you to look more deeply inside yourself,” Kalil noted. “I’m going to miss the friendships. We all belong here. No one is left out, and we’ve grown together.”

Kelsey Lindeman, a senior, has come a long way since playing a munchkin in the Wizard of Oz, all the way back in fourth grade. On her last bow on the Goshen High stage, she will tip her spout as Mrs. Potts.

“I am super-excited to play such an iconic role and sing the title song which shows Mrs. Pott’s soft, sweet side,” Kelsey said. “I’m still working on my British accent, but I fully relate to Mrs. Pott’s spunky personality.”

With Beauty and the Beast as her all-time favorite Disney movie and singing as her “favorite thing,” this is a last show made for Kelsey.

Her drama experience, including her comfort in the limelight, will serve her well as she prepares to pursue a degree and career in broadcasting.

A scene from a rehearsal of Beauty and the Beast

Senior Jacob Forman plays Lumière, the castle’ former maȋtre’d turned three-pronged candelabra by the curse.

“Lumière is loud, larger than life and the center of attention,” Jacob said. “It allows me to express myself in ways that give me confidence as an actor and as a person.”

Like his peers, Jacob sees Beauty and the Beast as a part of his childhood fantasy world. “I watched the movie over and over and saw the show on Broadway, which was amazing, so it’s really an honor to be a part of this production.”

Jacob’s big moment on stage is arguably the performance of the special edition song, “Human Again.”