The student news site of Jones College Prep High School

Blueprint

The student news site of Jones College Prep High School

Blueprint

The student news site of Jones College Prep High School

Blueprint

Opening the curtains

The Jones College Prep Drama Club announces the spring musical
Photo credits: Daniel Maclise
Photo credits: Daniel Maclise

On Nov. 15, the Jones College Prep Drama Club announced “Twelfth Night as the 2024 spring musical.

“Twelfth Night” follows the story of twins, Viola and Sebastian, who get separated in a shipwreck. Viola disguises herself to work for a duke she falls in love with, and the play is a cacophony of deception and comedy. 

Finding connections to the Jones community was a main focus in picking the musical.

“When you look at ‘Twelfth Night’ it’s very much a show about identity, which I think really is a theme in our community this year,” said Brennan Roach, drama teacher and club sponsor. “It allows us to open that door, ask questions, investigate, discover, and celebrate who we are.”

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“Twelfth Night” provides students with an opportunity to be challenged mentally in the realm of theater.

“I have now come to find that there is a hunger to be challenged among students, not just in the sense of being milled down with work but really having things that create questions and things that you want to dig into and discover,” said Roach. 

The planning for the musical will provide some challenges, as the cast will have to work around the original characters of the show. 

“I think we will have to ignore whether some roles are supposed to be male or female when we look at the characters in this musical,” said Madigan Tang ‘24. “There are a lot of good singers that I think will do good in whatever role they are in, and we can always adjust the script as well.”

The chosen musical stands out to drama participants who have participated in prior shows. 

“Most of the musicals are pretty popular or are Broadway productions, not Shakespeare plays,” said Tang. “I think this might appeal to a different crowd and the English teachers might be happier about it.”

Despite being one of Shakespeare’s works, the musical has been adapted for the modern stage.

“The music and setting are completely contemporary. It was written leading up to the show’s premiere in 2016,” said Roach. 

Studentswho have heard about the musical choice are unsure of what to expect, but are looking forward to seeing the production. 

“I know that it’s from Shakespeare, and I’m not sure how they are going to turn it into a musical,” said Avery Benderoff ‘25. “I do know that the past two musicals have been really good, and I’m really excited to see this.”

The production team is prioritizing the use of certain music genres to develop the musical’s setting.  

“The music is awesome. It kind of falls within this kind of jazz-funk, gospel kind of feel,” said Roach. “The setting of Illyria is going to have an almost New Orleans type of feel that you can hear in the music.”

Unlike the majority of previous Jones productions, the music for “Twelfth Night” will not come from an audio recording.

“This is the first show since I’ve been here and I guess in a while prior to me being here we are bringing back the having a live band for this one,” said Roach.

Since the Jones Jazz Band will be playing a major role in the show, they will spend time preparing alongside the cast. 

“We have a really fantastic jazz band…We are going to incorporate them into the stage design and we will be with them the whole time,” said Roach.

Many people look forward to being a part of this show, especially new actors looking to be in their first show. 

“I think everyone is looking forward to it and it’s going to be cool,” said Tang. “I know a lot of seniors who haven’t been in drama before or are coming over from tech for this musical just because they can, and I think it will be a very happy experience.”

While there are still a few months before the musical, seniors who are a part of the show hope to leave their impact on future performances. 

“It’s my last year at Jones, so this is my last musical and play ever,” said Tang. “While we haven’t had auditions yet, during the preparation for this musical I want to help prepare the rest of the drama department and the underclassmen for putting on shows after me and the seniors leave.”

The tight-knit drama community helps students build connections and develops the impacts of the upperclassmen.

“I’ve gotten to know a lot of new people and I’ve been able to connect with them,” said Tang. “It’s a very good community, so hopefully they are able to keep building cool things in the next few years.”

There is still time until auditions, and the drama department is looking for more people in various roles for this upcoming production.  

“I would encourage more people to try out or to be on tech or doing sound since they need more help,” said Tang. “You have nothing to lose and it’s not a matter of talent, and you should take a shot at it because it’s worth it.”

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Isabella Guzman '25, Journalism II
Jonah McClure '24, Journalism II

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