RUMFORD — The spring musical at Mountain Valley High School is one of the highlights on the April calendar for students, staff and community members. This year, it must leave its traditional home in Muskie Auditorium and be held at the Rumford Auditorium on the top floor of the Rumford Town Hall. The curtain will rise on April 10, 11 and 12 at 7 p.m. for performances of “Little Shop of Horrors.”

For the student actors, the change in venue was the topic on their mind more so than the musical itself.

Senior Kelsey Bevins said, “The flat roof over Muskie Auditorium leaks on the carpet, chairs and stage. The plant we’re renting costs a lot and it wouldn’t be good to get it wet. We also don’t want our audience dripped on.”

Senior Robyn Pellerin added, “It’s more difficult to produce the play because we’re used to our stage. The lights and acoustics are designed for plays. We were planning special effects but we won’t be able to do them because there’s no catwalk and no lights.”

She continued, “As a senior, it would have been cool to have my last musical at my stage. It’s like the theater is our home and and we’re getting kicked out.”

As an after thought, Bevins added, “How are we going to get our makeup cart there?”

The makeup cart is a huge fixture with lights, storage drawers and a large counter. Though it is on wheels, it is very heavy.

Stage manager Mariah Witas, who is a senior, looks on the change in venue as a challenge.

“Our auditorium just can’t be used right now with all of the leaks. We were lucky to find another auditorium so fast,” Witas said. “I think that we may have some challenges with sound and other technology because it is an unfamiliar stage. We’re out of our comfort zone, but we have a lot of talent. Our actors will put on a good show regardless.”

Principal Matt Gilbert optimistically said, “The change in location might work well. The Rumford Auditorium might attract a different crowd that doesn’t normally come to MVHS. Perhaps that will encourage them to attend future plays and concerts at our school.”

Finally the students were able to discuss the musical itself.

“Seymour works at a flower shop on Skid Row, not the nicest section of town,” said junior Kristin Arsenault. “He finds a mystery plant during a total eclipse of the sun and brings it into the shop. Then good things start to happen to him until …”

She refused to spoil the story line for those who have not seen the musical.

Arsenault said of the play, “It has great songs!”

Arsenault plays one of three urchins who help to narrate the play. Bevins is Audrey, Seymour’s love interest. Pellerin is Mrs. Mushnik, the shop owner. Ronnie Russell plays Seymour and Tucker Phelps will be Audrey II, the eight-foot tall plant.

Additional cast members include Corbin Arsenault, Sage Taylor Buzzard, Kortney Chapman, Carita DeTellis, Nathan Fitzpatrick, Casey Glover, Andrea Kehrer, Hannah Leonard, Saryn Magee, Dalton Milledge, Leah Perry, Tucker Phelps, Lance Richard, Ronnie Russell, Eric Thomas, Kelly Trenoweth, Alexis Vining and Brittany Wakefield.


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