‘Bye Bye Birdie’ opens tonight at Monroe High School

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The Monroe High School Theater Department will perform its fall musical, “Bye Bye Birdie,” tonight through Sunday in the Monroe High School Auditorium, 901 Herr Rd. Curtain times are 7 tonight and Saturday, the doors opening at 6.

A matinee will take place on Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and $5 for students and children. Tickets will be sold at the door.

“Bye Bye Birdie” is set in the 1950s. Teen music idol Conrad Birdie (played by Monroe County Middle College senior Mario Tucker) is drafted into the military much to the dismay of manager Albert Peterson (the junior MCMC Keegan Schmitt).

Albert’s assistant, Rose Alvarez (junior Presley Bray), dreams of becoming his wife if he can break free from her mother, Mae Peterson (senior Bee Seibert). At Rose’s suggestion, Albert agrees to write a new song for her debut on a TV farewell show where Birdie will kiss one of her biggest teenage fans. Kim MacAfee (Gabby Forrester senior) is selected, and the small town of Sweet Apple, Ohio is soon turned upside down, along with the MacAfee family home. The family members are: father Harry (young Mathieu Grenn), mother Doris (senior Danie White) and younger brother Randolph (senior Addison Chaffin). Everyone is giddy with excitement except for Hugo Peabody (junior Brandon Miller) who Kim was recently pinned on.

The news that Kim was pinned down by her high school boyfriend, Hugo, quickly spreads through the song

Songs include the classics “Put On a Happy Face”, “The Telephone Hour”, “An English Teacher”, “Honestly Sincere”, “Kids”, “One Last Kiss”, “Baby, Talk to Me” and “Spanish Pink”. .”

“Bye Bye Birdie” is under the direction of MHS language arts teacher Rebecca Molenda, who also choreographed the show and created the costumes. The stage manager is MHS language arts teacher Jeremy Kimberlin and music director Cate Windelborn, MHS music teacher.

“Without their knowledge, talent and skills, this production would not be possible,” said Molenda. “I enjoy working with them every day.”

Also assisting junior Kate Stephenson, sound technician, and senior Kai Carradine, light technician. Auditions were held the second week of school and rehearsals began immediately. Over 50 students are part of the cast and crew.

Life changes quickly for the MacAfee family when Kim is chosen as Conrad Birdie's lucky fan.  Pictured (left to right): brother Randolph (Addison Chaffin), Kim (Gabby Forrester), mother Doris (Danie White) and father Harry (Mathieu Grenn).  (Photo: SUPPLIED BY MONROE HIGH SCHOOL

“We had the largest group of students for auditions that we’ve had in many years,” Molenda said.

The drama department’s spring musical is “You Can’t Take It With You.”

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