Dark Comedy Based on 1988 Film, Touches upon Bullying and Unhealthy Desire for Popularity
Rehearsals are underway for Wilmington College Theatre’s production of Heathers, the Musical Nov. 21, 22 and 23, at 7:30 p.m., in Hugh G Heiland Theatre.
Director Bryan Wallingford described the student favorite as “Legally Blonde Meets Mean Girls Meets Carrie.” The dark comedy tackles, via often-grotesque satire, such social issues as bullying and teenagers’ desire to be popular at any cost.
Heathers, the Musical is intended for mature audiences due to stage violence and language.
In 1989, the most vicious creatures in shoulder pads, known as “the Heathers,” terrorize Westerberg High. Veronica Sawyer, who longs to be part of the in-crowd, starts out as their pet project, but after suffering the wrath of Heather Chandler, finds comfort in the arms of a mysterious, Slushie-guzzling stranger, who has plans to put the Heathers in their place.
Based on Daniel Walters’ 1988 film by the same name, Heathers contains edgy and culturally relevant numbers like “Beautiful,” “Candy Store” and “Seventeen.” Book, music and lyrics are by Kevin Murphy and Lawrence O’Keefe.
The cast features: Jennah Blair as Veronica Sawyer, Lachlan O’Neill as Jason “J.D.” Dean, Baylee Martin as Heather Chandler, Brittany Barnett as Heather McNamara, Riley Gatlin as Heather Duke, Fae Maffin as Martha Dunnstock, Allen Caltrider as Ram Sweeney and Gage Clemens as Kurt Kelly. Josh Woodward portrays the roles of Ram’s dad, the principal and Veronica’s dad, while Andrew Conarroe plays Kurt’s dad, Big Bud Dean and the coach, and Bekah Wall is cast as Ms. Fleming and Veronica’s mom.
The Westerberg High students include: Layne Frederick, Parker Gunkel, Andrew Hall, Alyssa Harper, Nicholas Keller, Joseph Schmidt, Jen Cochran, Shelbie Harris, Emma Horick, Cecelia Hunt, Shelby Kirby, Kendra Nelson, Rylee Riggs, Elie Ross, Rebecca Simonji, Jordan Snarr, Aubree Trusty and Maya Wahrhaftig.
In addition to Wallingford, the production team includes Wynn Alexander, scenic and costume design; Becky Haines, lighting and sound design; Timothy Larrick, music direction; Gina Beck, vocal coach; Cole Haugh, choreography; and Virginia Kongos, student stage manager.
Reservations for Heathers, the Musical can be made by contacting the Theatre Box Office, located in Boyd Cultural Arts Center, weekdays, from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 4 p.m. at 937.481.2267. Tickets are $15 for adults, $13 for senior citizens and $8 for college and high school students with valid identification. WC students attend free of charge.