Monday, July 15, 2024

WJCC Schools On Stage: Jamestown High to Present Mean Girls the Musical

Jamestown High School presents Mean Girls the Musical (Megan Roche)

WILLIAMSBURG — The kids in the Jamestown High School theater program have adopted the fictional North Shore High School this spring as their pseudo-school. Beginning April 20, the theater department will showcase its spring musical: “Mean Girls.”

A classic 2000s-era film, “Mean Girls” is a satirical take on the life and times of a typical high school girl. Filled with girl drama, the high school heartthrob, diet fads, and high school parties, the movie takes viewers back to their own high school days. It also showcases many issues that are still relevant in today’s society; bullying, fitting in, being the new kid, inclusivity, and dating.

Director J. Harvey Stone has been hard at work with the cast of “Mean Girls.” He wanted a musical that would highlight the many talented females in the program. Kaci Miedema and Lulu Wilson have been doing theater together since eighth grade, and the two seniors play Gretchen Wieners and Karen Smith, respectively.

“It’s just crazy that we all get to do this together. There’s this sadness to it as well that once this is done, we’re never going to do theater together again,” Miedema said.

For Wilson, starring in a show that is mainly driven by an all-female-led cast is special.

“There’s a lot of shows that have all-male leads that carry the show and the female role is always the love interest. With this show, there is a love story but it’s kind of secondary to what the show is all about. The girls are carrying this show through and you really get to see the differences in each girl character and how their own story unfolds,” Wilson said.

Mean Girls at Jamestown High School (Megan Roche)

Given the hard-hitting topics that the show faces head-on, Stone wanted to make the cast and public aware of how those issues are portrayed in the show. Stone had a nutritionist, family therapist, and a social media professor come to speak to the cast on various days.

“The way we have tackled the issues is really head-on. I think the students understand them pretty well and the redemption story in the show will hopefully help the community understand the value in exploring these issues,” Stone said.

The high school version is different from the movie in many ways but still aims to showcase the typical high school girl experience. Stone was drawn to the show after seeing “Mean Girls” on Broadway. The decision to do the show wasn’t an easy one, however.

“After doing “Beauty and the Beast” last year, we could only have one Belle. But we had this ensemble of amazing young women in our cast. We knew there had to be a show out there that would give us the opportunity to showcase our talented females. The fact that we wanted something that was female heavy, the fact that we wanted something that was different from “Beauty and the Beast,” and the changes that were made to the script to make it high school appropriate, those three things made me say ‘Mean Girls is it'”, Stone said.

As Miedema and Wilson take the Jamestown High School stage for the last time, the two are hoping to inspire the next generation of musical theater talent.

“I hope when the kids come to the show that they can feel all of our energy and excitement from the stage,” Wilson said. “I am hoping that they are being inspired by all the opportunities that theater presents to them. I want them to say ‘Wow, this is an awesome way for me to get involved with people in my school while also have the opportunity to perform something for the community,” Miedema said.

“Mean Girls” is set to open on April 20 at 7 p.m. Shows continue on April 21 at 7 p.m. and April 22 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online.

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