With suspense, drama, a little romance and lots of music, the Perry Players will set an old classic to music as they perform “Jekyll & Hyde: The Musical.”
Director Hunter Hufnagel, who also plays the part of Lord Savage in the show, said the musical is based on the classic novel from the 1800s, and in his opinion, it is one of the best Broadway musicals out there.
The musical is appropriate for high school students and older.
Set in 1888 Victorian London, the story revolves around Dr. Henry Jekyll (Justin Carr), a scientist wanting to test out his experiments on human patients. He eventually experiments on himself, an act which propels him into becoming the antagonist of the story, Edward Hyde (also played by Carr). The story has romance, drama and the kind of haunting environment with the set, costumes and the music all combined, Hufnagel said.
“So people who enjoy kind of spooky stuff will enjoy it, It keeps you on the edge of your seat the entire time,” he explained. “There’s a lot of different climaxes in the show, a lot of different plotlines and twists that go along with the story.”
Hufnagel said he has been wanting to do this show for six years, but it was very difficult to find just the right cast. He said the musical is considered by most actors and directors to be the one of the most difficult to put on.
“The music for ‘Jekyll and Hyde: The Musical’ is very challenging, and it adds to the drama and intensity of the storyline,” said Tami Daniels, musical director. “Audience members might know the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, but hearing it set to music takes it to a whole new level. We are proud to have a cast of some of the most talented actors in Middle Georgia who will be bringing the musical to life!”
Although most shows generally take six to eight weeks to put together, Hufnagel said that auditions were held in March and rehearsals started in early May to make sure the 35 member cast had ample time to get everything together. He said he had a lot of different people audition for the show, and it just worked out at this time period, with the right people who were suitable for these particular roles, along with two recent Houston County High School graduates, Alex Frizzell and Tyler Stella, who developed the choreography.
The show has a combination of solos, duets, small ensembles and full cast numbers. Daniels said that since the entire show is told through music, the choreography, costuming and set design has been combined to “create an unforgettable experience for our theater audience.”
“It takes a lot of experience to portray these characters,” Hufnagel explained. “This is one of my favorites ... and I’m really really excited to be able to do it and for people to be able to see it. In addition to the story, people are going to be blown away by the costumes the details in it and the set. It’s a big opener to the 2019-2020 season.”
“Jekyll & Hyde: The Musical”
Where: Perry Players Community Theatre, 909 Main St, Perry
When: 7:30 p.m. July 11-13, 18-20 and 25-27, 2:30 p.m. July 14, 21 and 28
Cost: $22.50, $20 for seniors older than 60, active military and students, $18 group tickets for 10 or more
Information: www.perryplayers.org; 478-987-5354