Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
The directors of the musical are Kim Horning and Sarah Thursby. The musical is put on by students in grades 9-12 at NUHS and it will be presented at the New Ulm High School theatre.
The first show is at 7 p.m. on Friday and it will be followed by a 7 p.m. show on Saturday and a 2 p.m. show on Sunday. Cost is $10 for adults and $7 for students.
After Horning and Thursby learned last year that they were going to be in charge of the 2017 fall musical, they pitched the idea of going to New York City to gather ideas and eventually went there this past July.
“We spent four days in New York City and we saw four different productions and one of them was Charlie and the Chocolate Factory,” Horning said. “We just really liked the idea and it was appealing to older people and younger students, the community in general. It’s colorful and bright and it sends a good message to always keep hoping for things.”
This is Horning’s second time as a director. She said that this time around she has had a different experience because there are more people involved with the production, including students from other classes involved in creating the set.
“It’s been nice to collaborate with the other people that were hired for certain jobs,” she said. “Most of them work within the school as teachers and the theatre classes and shop classes are involved in helping build the set. Some of the students in Sarah’s class are involved with the marketing and they went out around town and put the posters up. It’s been really students hands-on for the high school students.”
Both Thursby and Horning knew last year that they’d be collaborating on the fall musical so the planning stages began early. They attended workshops together and Horning said the two work well together and collaborate well.
Horning said that the students at New Ulm High School have enjoyed working with the musical in practices so far and the group is a good one for her and Thursby.
“We have a good mix of students, there’s seniors in the group that have been in musicals before, there’s freshmen that are brand new to musicals,” she said. “The audience can expect a lot of fun props, it’s about going to a candy factory so there’s lots of bright colors and we’re using the entire theatre, we’re not just using the stage so the actors will be dancing in the aisles and we’ll use the balcony. We’re really incorporating the entire theatre that New Ulm High School has.”
Horning said that the whole experience has opened up the eyes of a lot of students all over at the high school.
“It’s not just students who are involved with choir who are in a musical,” she said. “We’re integrating all different classes, from the shop class to the theatre classes, to the kids that are in choir. There are students in the choir that never thought they would do something because they registered for a theatre class and here they are being a chorus member or dancing in a scene.
“That’s been kind of fun, because the students just really open up and they’re doing things that they never thought that they could do or wanted to do,” Horning said. “It’s been the biggest difference this year.”
Jacob Beranek: Willy Wonka
Emma Maudal: Charlie Bucket
Nick Schultz: Grandpa Joe
Makenna Otto: Grandma Josephine, Oompa Loompa
Lizzy Wilfahrt: Grandma Georgina
Andrew Schroeder: Grandpa George, Oompa Loompa
Abigail Allen: Mrs. Bucket, Violet Double
Augie Babel: Mr. Bucket, Oompa Loompa
Ethan O’Conner: Candy Man
Lucy Sletta: Augustus Gloop
Kareen Hammerschmidt: Mrs. Gloop
Rachel Hohensee: Veruca Salt
Bethany Janssen: Mr. Salt
Miles Irwin: Mike Teavee, Phineous Trout
Ellie Wilker: Ms. Teavee
Sarah Preisinger: Violet Beauregarde, Squirrel, German Cook, Kid
Samantha Nesje: Mrs. Beauregarde
Hannah Larson: Felicity Stout
Kelsi Miller: Oompa Loompa, Matilda, German Cook
Alex Bidwell: Oompa Loompa, Kid
Graden Anderson: Oompa Loompa, James
Matthew Schlieman: Oompa Loompa, German Cook, Kid
Sam Portner: German Cook, Kid
Dylan Kotten: Oompa Loompa, German Cook
Jace Addy: Oompa Loompa, German Cook
Hailey Boelter: German Cook, kid
Annika Anderson: Oompa Loompa, German Cook
Michelle Gruber: Oompa Loompa, Kid
Matthew Poehler: Oompa Loompa
Celia Fluegge: Oompa Loompa
Moriah Norway: Kid
Emily Apple: Kid
Carter Brandes: Kid
Lauren Schueler: Squirrel, Swing Flag Twirler
Sage Lehman: Squirrel, Swing Flag Twirler
Jessica Miller: Squirrel, Swing Flag Twirler
Vanessa Howell: Squirrel, Swing Flag Twirler
Alexia Roiger: Squirrel, Swing Flag Twirler
Directors: Kim Horning, Sarah Thursby
Student Director: Isaac Wilfahrt
Choreography: Meredith Gunderson, Sarah Thursby
Set and props: Sarah Thursby, Kim Horning, Sheldon Rieke, Bridget Gusso
Lights and sound: Jason Olson
Student stage manager: Owen Wilkins
Backstage crew: Deren Swanson-Cullen, Alex Stovall, Taylor Savoy, Aaron Dewanz