Chardon’s Beauty and The Beast

Beauty and The Beast ads decorated the hallways, gearing excited hilltoppers up for a fantastic musical.

Beauty and The Beast ads decorated the hallways, gearing excited hilltoppers up for a fantastic musical.

Molly Evans, Staff Writer

March 13, 2020 marked the beginning of a never ending attempt to produce a spring musical for the drama club. With cancellations of the musical for the last two years, this March 13 will bring talking silverware, a menacing beast, and a book-loving princess in Beauty and the Beast to the stage. It’s taken a lot of long nights for the drama club to fully prepare for the musical. 

The classic story stars some of the most talented singers that attend Chardon High School, including Senior Olivia Nelson as Belle, Freshman Vince Patriowksi as Gaston, and Senior Jack Myers as the Beast. If you’re familiar with the 1991 movie, you’re sure to recognize the iconic costumes, movie accurate sets, and of course, the infamous soundtrack.

The crew members are prepared to take on the challenges of putting on a musical, which is a much taller task than putting on a play. 

“There’s a lot more moving parts,” stage crew member Charlotte Herbuck said. “It’s a lot more choreography with the dance members; there’s more people because of the ensemble.” 

Members of Makeup and Costume have spent more than a month piecing together costumes that will closely resemble costumes in the original movie, ranging from a yellow ball gown for Belle to gold spoons and forks for the ensemble. 

“I put together the napkin skirts, I painted and glittered the silverware, and I got Lafoue’s outfit together,” makeup and costume member Julianne Sweet said. “I’m doing all this work but won’t be able to view it,” she lamented, as she’ll be behind the scenes.

Sweet added that she thinks the audience will enjoy the music, which is performed by Chardon High School’s talented pit band. 

“It makes it have a more ‘Chardon’ feel,” Sweet said.

Herbruck agreed. “The audience is going to enjoy the musical numbers,” she said. Herbruck also believes that, if everything goes as planned, the transformation of the beast is sure to impress the crowd.

While lots of work is being done behind the scenes, the cast members are busy preparing for the pressure of being under the spotlight on opening night. 

“The music aspect, as a whole, is another added element,” Carley Gutka says. Gutka plays Madame De La Grande Bouche, more commonly known as the wardrobe who walks and talks. Gutka also spoke about the complex process that comes with performing.

“Learning choreography is really hard, especially for the amount we learn in such a short amount of time,” Gutka said. 

There’s still lots to be done before the big night, but the cast and crew promise the long awaited spring musical will not disappoint. A widely beloved story like Beauty and the Beast can be enjoyed by all. Months of hard work and dedication to the performance from the drama department will be worth it in the end.

Opening night is on March 10, with student tickets priced at $10 and adult tickets at $15.

Audience members reveled in the outstanding performances by the actors in the Chardon’s Beauty and The Beast this weekend, resulting in a roar of applause. The show impressed many, which was evident in the audience reaction as well as a sold out matinee performance. The hard work that went into the musical had most definitely paid off; every performance was a major success. 

One of the best parts of the show was how familiar it was. The sets, the songs, and the costumes could bring anyone back to the first time they watched the original movie. The show featured a set that depicted Belle’s small town, as well as an incredibly elaborate castle background. The castle was able to accurately symbolize the somber, lonely reality for the Beast and his friends that are bounded by a curse. But the acting within the foreground was something to remember.

Olivia Nelson delivered an unforgettable performance as Belle, surpassing my expectations every time she sang. Not only was her singing impressive, but her lively expressions on stage had me feeling her emotions along with her. Jack Myers as the Beast was an incredible male lead, making raging fury seem effortless. Freshman Vince Piotrowski played the narcissistic Gaston, and certainly did it well. His invasive presence evoked audible laughter in myself and other members in the audience. Perhaps the funniest character was Lumiere, played by Colin Snider. Snider maintained an accurate French accent throughout the entire show, and had great comedic timing. Other notable performances from Liam Richards as Lefoue, Theo Johns as Cogsworth, and Lexi Jackson as Mrs. Pots made the show that much more enjoyable.

No show is complete without the costumes. Chardon’s Makeup & Costume crew that designed the costumes for this musical created a wildly entertaining visual aspect. They managed to put together a wardrobe costume that literally held clothing, a clock, and even simplistic yet iconic costumes like Belle’s yellow gown. Each costume accentuated their actors’ performances, closely pertaining to the costumes in the original movie.