Auditions and Cast List!!!

The first week in February was all about auditions! This will be my ELEVENTH show with the students at Fort Dodge Senior High and it’s a REALLY different choice for us.

The show is “Bright Star”, written by Steve Martin and Edie Brickell. It was nominated for several Tony awards in 2016. Unfortunately, that was the same year “Hamilton” was nominated for several Tony’s. (I’m just kidding – I LOVE the score of Hamilton and hope to actually see it someday!). The music has a very folk music/bluegrass sort of feel and it’s much more of an ensemble show than a “star vehicle”.

Usually our audition week goes like this – Auditions Monday through Wednesday (kids just pick one day to sign up for) during which everyone must sing and dance and then they may choose to read for a speaking part. Thursday is reserved for callbacks with the cast list going up on Friday right after school.

But we don’t need to hold callbacks this year!

I’m totally serious. The cast list is complete (with the exception of a few one line type roles from the chorus and assigning specific portions of the chorus to songs that don’t need the whole cast.) It will feel REALLY weird not to stay after school tomorrow – Thursday – and watch more auditions. The cast list will get posted in a couple of different online places and then we meet for the first read-through on Monday!

My favorite time of the year is about to begin!

TBR for February!

As has become my custom, I am participating in a few Readthons in the month of February. Because if one Readathon is fun more than one is AWESOME, right?!

Blackathon is hosted by Bowties and Books (find their Youtube video here!). I have been very intentional in seeking out authors who aren’t exactly like me and this Readathon (plus the handy dandy booklist in the comments) has been a HUGE help.

#vaLITines is a month long readathon to celebrate the love of reading. Their info can be found on Twitter here.

Throughout the year I’ll be working through PopSugar, 52 Books in 52 Weeks, Con Sabor Reading Challenge, and Romanceopoly (those challenges can be found with a quick Google search!)

Check back weekly for updates on all the reading fun!

Showtime . . . Almost

My favorite time of the year is almost upon us! The first week in February will see students from Fort Dodge Senior High auditioning for the annual Spring musical. This will be my 11th musical as the theatrical director for FDSH and I look forward to the experience every year.

This year we are doing “Bright Star” written by Steve Martin (yes, THAT Steve Martin) and Edie Brickell. It was nominated for several Tony awards . . . the same year as Hamilton, The Color Purple, Waitress . . . it was a big year for great shows that year!

This show is a bit of a departure for us stylistically. It’s definitely more of an “ensemble” show, providing numerous actors with featured moments on stage. I’m excited to get the process started . . . even if auditions and casting are super-stressful! So here’s to another exciting Spring watching students share their passion onstage!

From My Bookshelf – Gray Wolf by J.W. Webb

Corin an Fol has one purpose in life – avenge the deaths of his parents and rescue his sister. He joins the elite Wolf Regiment and, despite his skill and hard work, the swordmaster Taskala takes an instant disliking to Corin. He is harder on Corin than any other member of the regiment which just strengthens Corin’s resolve to get revenge.

His heartbreak is eased somewhat when he falls in love with Yazrana, a fellow member of his regiment and skilled fighter. But corrupt politicians, warring factions, and a civil war destroy Corin’s newfound happiness and leave him wondering exactly who he can trust and to whom he should pledge his sword.

This is the first of five books in a series and believe me when I say the rest of the series is on my wish list! Corin is not the type of “heroic” character you are immediately drawn to but he definitely wins you over in the end with his fierce loyalty and willingness to risk himself for those he cares about. There are numerous questions left unanswered at the end of the book and I can’t wait to pick up the next one!