About a month ago wrapped up the 10th musical The Captain has directed at his high school. It is also the 10th high school musical I have choreographed alongside him. I felt this decade of musicals was a big deal, and so on closing night, the cast called him up on the stage, said a few words about the big “10” and gave him an amazing bouquet of balloons and flowers. He was mortified but was OK with it in the end. The Captain is very modest about his successes. He actually turned a few shades of tomato. Mission accomplished.
When The Captain took over the theater program over 10 years ago, it was following a director who was a legend at the school. Kids can sometimes be strange (imagine that!), and they were none too accepting of “the new guy.” It took time, but he made it. And 10 musicals later, he really made it. I believe this is a milestone that doesn’t occur often, so balloons, flowers and adequate blushing were required.
Being a director is extremely time-consuming. We had both of our dudes during the 10 years. String Bean was just an infant during the production time of the first musical. I would wear him in a Baby Bjorn while I choreographed the dances. Squishy came along four years later, just in time for me to demonstrate dance techniques a la Kevin Bacon. I rode the ride alongside The Captain during the journey, filled with ups and downs, crazy teenagers, overly involved parents and a fickle administration. Ten spring musicals.
Here they are in order:
- Once Upon a Mattress
- South Pacific
- Guys and Dolls
- The Boyfriend
- Crazy For You
- Thoroughly Modern Millie
- Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat
I am proud of The Captain and the almost perfect 10 shows. I say almost perfect because some of them were bumpy rides. In Footloose, he cast a brother and sister to play the parents of the wild and strong-willed Ariel. The brother and sister sinister duo teamed up on him and attacked him on a social media website. Anonymously, of course. But, besides that little snafu in year four, it was almost smooth sailing.
So, in the words of Joseph, “Any dream will do,” but three standing ovations also work.