By Pam Harnden, Livermore Falls Advertiser
JAY — The musical Once Upon A Mattress will be performed at Spruce Mountain High School Dec. 1-3. The Friday and Saturday shows start at 7 p.m. Sunday’s matinee is at 2 p.m.
This is the school’s first production featuring Kymberli Bryant as director. She is doing a few things differently.
Bryant has asked that seats be reserved if at all possible. While more shows are being held, fewer seats will be available for each show. Seats in the back and sides have been eliminated.
“We want to avoid people not being able to see. Make it easier for people to hear,” she said.
Ticket prices are $8 for adults and $5 for students (including college) and senior citizens. Seats may be reserved by calling 530-8105 or emailing email@example.com.
Reserved tickets can be picked up at the door. Tickets will still be available at the door.
“Eventually we’ll transition to reserved seats so people don’t have to get here as early,” Bryant said.
Auditions were held the first week of October. The first rehearsal was Oct. 10. One cast member is from the middle school. The rest are high school students.
Bryant said rehearsals have been held three times a week on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m.
“The night rehearsals are new. It allowed me and the kids to do other things we needed to do. There were fewer conflicts with games,” Bryant said.
Bryant said Livermore Falls High School performed Once Upon A Mattress several years ago. She chose it because it’s fun and relatively simple.
“The sets, costumes and music are not really difficult. It’s one I’ve always wanted to do,” she said.
Daniel Labonte is the music director. Twelve local musicians will be in the pit. There are a few instrumental numbers and 19 with vocals.
The school’s costume shop had many of the costumes needed. Bryant said she is supplementing those and making a few for which the right sizes aren’t available.
Students in the tech theater and drama classes worked on the sets. Most were carved out of foam.
“The foam is dusty. The floor needs to be swept before each rehearsal. It will be vacuumed before performances,” Bryant said.
Bryant said the musical’s title has raised some questions.
“There is an unwed, pregnant woman in it. That was very risque then. People are more accepting of it today. All ages will enjoy it,” she said.
“I have a lot of kids who’ve done drama but not held major parts before,” Bryant said.
Arianna Gordon, who plays Princess Winnifred said, “The music is a lot of fun.”
“It’s a comedy. It’s hilarious,” Bryant said.
Once Upon A Mattress is an adaption of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale The Princess and the Pea. It opened off Broadway in 1959.
The musical later moved to the Broadway theater now known as the Neil Simon Theatre and other Broadway theaters. Carol Burnett made her Broadway debut in the show.