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The stage is set

School plays offer entertainment, showcase talent

Altamont fifth-graders rehearse for an upcoming production of “Seussical, Jr.”

Altamont fifth-graders rehearse for an upcoming production of “Seussical, Jr.”

— This weekend, prepare to take a journey with a mischievous cat, cheer for a take on America’s favorite pastime, witness a man’s morally questionable rise in business, and groove to a royal exploration of popular music.

Four local school productions are opening this week, showcasing high school and elementary students at three school districts. Careful planning can also allow for all four productions to be seen across four days.

Altamont Elementary School will present its spring musical, “Seussical, Jr.,” on March 28 and 29 at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5. Beloved characters imagined by Dr. Seuss will travel through several zany scenes, with set pieces and costumes designed by parent volunteers.

Robert Whiteman, director of “Seussical,” said he got the idea for the musical after seeing it performed at Voorheesville Middle School a couple years ago, where his daughter was attending. He said “Seussical” requires a lot of singing and voice acting, which suited the fifth-grade students.

“Our music teacher and I knew it would be a good fit for them,” Whiteman said. “They are absolutely in love with this show and this process. They are a particularly highly motivated and very talented group of kids.”

Emily Russo, who plays JoJo, said her favorite part about the play is the song “It’s Possible.”

“I just like singing and seeing all the fish swimming around,” Russo said.

The costumes add some fun to the show for students, too. Kendall Reihs, who plays a bird girl, said, “Dancing with the feather tails is the best.”

Whiteman acknowledged many parent and staff volunteers helped bring the production to life.

“This has been an absolute joy for me working with the set of parents and my staff here that have really stepped up the game,” he said. “I just sort of gave my vision and discussed some details with them, and they have run with it and done an unbelievable job.”

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