PHS presented Grease on March 9-12, 2017.
HERSHEY APOLLO AWARDS
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Musical: Briana Gingrich
Outstanding Featured Performer in a Musical: Garrett Curfman
HERSHEY APOLLO AWARD NOMINATIONS:
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Musical: Tori Gaffey
Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Musical: Lily Fields
Outstanding Dance Number: Born to Hand Jive
Close your eyes and imagine the excited sounds of our community when we announced Grease as our spring 2017 high school musical. The students were ecstatic—and their parents—well, their parents were even more enthusiastic. Like me, many of their earliest memories were singing along with Olivia Newton John and proclaiming their hopeless devotion to Danny Zuko. So what is it about Grease that is so addictive for so many? It’s popularity spans generations, and with last year’s release of Fox’s Grease: LIVE, another generation of pink-lady-lovin’ fans were born.
While this familiarity conjures great memories for so many of us, it also provides a great challenge for directors and producers. We struggle with how to honor and stay true to the original work while bringing our own uniqueness to the piece. Our production of Grease focuses on the relationship between reality and fantasy in the high school student’s mind. The students of Rydell High, like most teenagers, are at a pivotal point in their lives. They are continually fighting to keep their feet firmly planted in two worlds—adolescence and adulthood. While the realities of life sometimes dictate which world they are presently in, their individual personalities accentuate the struggle and joys each character experiences.
So, why do these characters—and many of the teenagers we know—want to grow up so fast? I think they just want to be heard. They have feelings, and experiences, and backgrounds, and lives that make them all unique. They are each struggling in their own way to be noticed. For Danny, you can see this through the pressure to be a strong leader. It’s there in Jan and her ability to be the peacemaker. You can see it through Rizzo’s complicated desire to find what she thinks will someday feel deep down like love. And, it is there in Sandy’s ability to hold on to her own values while being brave enough to reach beyond the limits she places on herself. I could go on and on through each of our 55 students. Each has developed and explored their own story and their own need to be heard during this “time of illusion, wrapped up in trouble, laced in confusion.”
The Grease you know and love is right here for you to enjoy, but we would like to challenge you to hear and see OUR Grease. It’s the one where there’s so much support from family and friends, that you’ll witness their imprint on each smile and on every stitch of costume. It’s in each paint stroke, and every piece of choreography. It’s there with every ticket sold and each piece of encouragement spread through the joyful and stressful times. Palmyra is a unique community, and I’m proud to be a part of it. Thank you, Mark, for bringing me into this community and raising our beautiful family here. Mark, Rosemary, and Aaron, your support makes all of this possible.
JASMINE BUCHER, DIRECTOR