Northside adds orchestra to spring production of ‘Chicago’

Sun News correspondentApril 30, 2014 

For the first time in about six years, Northside High School will be adding a live orchestra to its spring production of “Chicago.”

Brian Barnett, drama director at Northside High, said the addition of the orchestra would bring an additional significance to the show.

“A live orchestra just brings a whole other dimension of professional and excitement,” Barnett said. “It fit perfectly into the style of the show as well as the fact that this is our 50th anniversary show.”

The main cast is composed of very talented and award winning young people.

Velma will be played by Brianna Robertson. A senior at Northside High School, Brianna was chosen as the Best Actress in AAAAA during One-Act competition in the fall, while Olivia McMillan will play Mary Sunshine. McMillan is the current Miss Warner Robins Outstanding Teen and the state wining literary soloist. Hannah Broeils will portray the Roxie in her lead stage debut.

Alex Oakley will be emceeing the show, playing the jurors as well as performing in the orchestra. Oakley will be attending Governor’s Honors this summer.

“He is the top saxophone player at the school, so we wanted him in the orchestra,” Barnett said. “He plays all the jurors, from a drunk to nun, changing in a split second. He is so versatile and has been doing leads for us since ninth grade; I really wanted to find another way to show off his talent.”

J’Quan Gulley, who has been selected to Region All- star Cast among other acting awards, will be playing the attorney, Billy Flynn.

Other students in lead roles are Jared Watson, whose parents were both involved in drama when they attended Northside; Kyaria Walker, a senior with what Barnett called a “powerhouse” voice; and William Crouch, who was a contestant on Teen Jeopardy last year.

“These are just kids that are involved in a lot of ways. They are all talented and smart and do a lot of great things at Northside,” Barnett said.

A silent auction will be held in the theater lobby an hour prior to the performance and during intermission. Auction items include shooting scripts for movies and TV shows, playbills signed by Broadway casts from current and previous shows, and autographed Broadway memorabilia, and books about theatre.

“Chicago” will be performed in the Ray Horne Theatre For Performing Arts on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. Tickets are $10 in advance or at the door, reserved seating only. For reservations, please email Richard.frazier@hcbe.net or call 478-929-7858, ext. 41118.

Contact Alline Kent at 478-396-2467 or allinekent@cox.net.

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