Thursday, December 4, 2008

Drama Club Member Gets Grammy Nod!

Kate McGarry BHS 1980 grad and former Drama Club member "Lucy in You're a Good Man Charlie Brown" just got a grammy nomination for her new album "If Less Is More...Nothing Is Everything"

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (Dec. 3, 2008) — Nominations for the 51st Annual GRAMMY® Awards were
announced tonight by The Recording Academy® and reflected one of the most diverse years ever with the Album
Of The Year category alone representing the rap, R&B, folk and rock genres.

Nods for Best Jazz Vocal Album go to:
Imagina: Songs Of Brasil — Karrin Allyson
Breakfast On The Morning Tram — Stacey Kent
If Less Is More…Nothing Is Everything — Kate McGarry
Loverly — Cassandra Wilson
Distances — Norma Winstone (Glauco Venier & Klaus Gesing)

Good Luck Kate!

The Hobbit is Coming in March!!!

See times for Auditions below.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

High Drama: Against all Oz on Bus Radio

Cast of "High Drama"....Exclusive!!
Lucia got a chance to hang out with some of the cast from the show "High Drama," a reality show about a high school that puts on awesome school plays! Check it out as the cast answers Lucia's toughest questions....and don't forget to look for the show on!!

BusRadio is an innovative media company that reaches over one million students every day on their bus ride to and from school. By offering a superior, age-appropriate alternative to AM/FM radio programming, students are engaged and entertained in the safest way possible.

Exclusive agreements with school districts and school bus contractors in the top 40 markets mean 10,000 school buses nationwide are fitted with our customized digital radio units. These units receive new programming every day, via WiFi from our centralized programming facility, that entertains students with three separate shows specifically tailored to Elementary, Middle and High School audiences.

Students are driven to interact with the BusRadio show on air and online at through exciting contests, lively DJ banter, PSAs and age-appropriate top 40 songs. With BusRadio, students are guaranteed to be entertained, even when they're not on the bus.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Review is in! The Barnstable Patriot reviews A Christmas Carol.

A Christmas Carol is a hauntingly good holiday show

by Kathleen Szmit

There are many popular Christmas stories, but none more beloved, perhaps, than Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol.

It wouldn’t be a proper holiday without a telling of the timeless classic in which miserly old Ebenezer Scrooge receives redemption from his wicked ways through the lessons learned during visits with three powerful spirits.

This time the Barnstable High School Drama Club takes on the task, and masterfully so, offering an engaging, and at times stunning version of A Christmas Carol.

In keeping with his desire to put as many fine actors onstage as possible, director John Sullivan has again double-cast the show. While not a surprise to devoted Club fans, what was a surprise to me was having a woman cast as Scrooge.

Having spent years taking in various versions of the Dickens drama, I don’t recall ever seeing Scrooge played as a woman, and I was immediately intrigued.

Caitlin Gardipe was fantastic, seamlessly transforming Scrooge from a curmudgeonly miser into a wretched shrew. The gender change offered a refreshing take on the tale, and clever changes to parts of the storyline made it all the more believable.

As Scrooge attempted to set to bed on that cold Christmas eve, the routine she’d clung to for far too long was suddenly rocked by none other than Jacob Marley, or rather, his ghost, come back to haunt her and set her straight.

Shane Harris as Marley was spectacular. From the chains clanking about him, to his ghastly face and ominous tone, he was a truly eerie sight, becoming even more frightful when he suddenly flew mightily above Scrooge’s head in a fit of anger, special effects thanks to Flying by Foy.

Then came the spirits. On this night Christmas Past was portrayed by Emma Charpentier, Christmas Present by Tom Myers, and Christmas Future by Jason Pacella.

Charpentier, adorned in festive holiday crimson with a halo of holly and ivy, was charming and thoughtful as she took Scrooge on her journey back in time, reminding her of what a lighthearted girl she had once been.

Resplendent in green velvet and majestically tall thanks to skilled stilt walking, Myer cast an imposing figure as Christmas Present, delivering his lines such that it was not only Scrooge who snapped to attention in his presence.

The most frightening and powerful of all of the spirits, however, was also the most silent. Pacella, as Future, spoke no words. Suspended high above the stage and clad in flowing black robes, Pacella simply pointed out Scrooge’s grim future with skeletal hands.

Because the tale is familiar, everyone expects Scrooge’s profound personality change in the end, but it was the little touches that made the journey within the BHS show so entertaining.

Look for several flying characters, an utterly adorable Tiny Tim, superbly played by young Austin Benevides, falling snow, and a chillingly creepy scene following the visit of Christmas Present.

What made this show even more stunning are the amazing sets. While some were rented, such as a beautifully painted backdrop, designer Ethan Brown created much of the set.

With help from a slew of builders including stage manager Evan Hausmann, Dickens’ 1800s London came to life. Lighting from Steve Bearse, Tristan O’Toole and Brittany Myers greatly enhanced each scene.

Though not a musical, the show did include several holiday carols with accompaniment from musical director Michael Gross and musicians Carolyn Kunze, Larry Chaplan, Dan LePage, Al Orlando, and Jarrod Henly.

Limited space prevents me from mentioning everyone onstage and off who was integral to the success of the show, but it was obvious that this team put in great effort to create a dynamic and exciting play.

The holidays are upon us. If you need a little lift, A Christmas Carol will put you right in the spirit.

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol will be performed by the Barnstable High School Drama Club Nov. 28 and 29 at 7 p.m., and Nov. 29 and 30 at 2 p.m. All tickets are $10. For more information and to make reservations, call the BHSDC at 508-771-6246.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Jacob Marley and The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come.

One thing the Drama Club has learned is how to make ghosts appear on the stage Jacob Marley (Shane Harris) and The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come (Cait Gardipe) are the latest ghosts to perform on the BHS stage.

The Christmas Carol Opens!!!

Here are some pictures from opening weekend!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder -

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - Margaret Wolfe Hungerford- 1878

Shakespeare expressed a similar sentiment in Love's Labours Lost, 1588:

Good Lord Boyet, my beauty, though but mean,
Needs not the painted flourish of your praise:
Beauty is bought by judgement of the eye,
Not utter'd by base sale of chapmen's tongues

Benjamin Franklin, in Poor Richard's Almanack, 1741, wrote:

Beauty, like supreme dominion
Is but supported by opinion

David Hume's Essays, Moral and Political, 1742, include:

"Beauty in things exists merely in the mind which contemplates them."

Haunted House Commercial from 2007

Special thanks to Charlie Nash for getting scared all those times!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Monday, October 13, 2008

What do you think of the show? Let us know how you feel about the show?

We have gotten good notices so far. Positive reviews have been seen in The Boston Globe, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Daily News, The Boston Herald and numerous websites related to online content.

here are a few:

the show can be seen here -

We are glad that we can build upon our All American City Award last year by showcasing Barnstable and it's students on the web to the entire country.

Don't miss the next two Webisodes of "High Drama"!!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

High Drama Starts Oct 6th

The behind-the-scenes story of the Barnstable High School Drama Club production of “The Wizard of Oz,” developed for the Web by, video on-demand network, will premiere online Monday at

After Monday, two of the remaining 12 episodes will be posted every Monday through the Nov. 17 finale.

“High Drama: Against All Oz,” with “webisodes” averaging about three to five minutes, will be the kickoff show for the site’s original programming this month.

Here is the trailer.....

Here is the Website the webisodes will air on....

Friday, September 12, 2008

The 26th Haunted House is coming!

Stage Directions announces it's winners of their High School Honors Theatre Program

SD Announces Winners of High School Honors Program

LAS VEGAS — After surveying educators, college admissions recruiters and theatre professionals — not to mention the students and parents of students across the country — Stage Directions is proud to announce the winners of its inaugural High School Honors Theatre Program. The winners, which will all be featured in the November issue of SD, are:

Midwest: Libertyville High School in Libertyville, Ill.
Northeast: Barnstable High School in Hyannis, Mass.
Northwest: Blanchet High in Seattle Wash.
Southeast: West Orange High School in Orlando, Fla.
Southwest: Las Vegas Academy Theatre in Las Vegas, Nev.
Canada: Conseil Scolaire de District Des Ecoles Catholiques Du Sud-Ouest - Ecole Secondaire I'Essor in Windsor Ontario.

The attention paid to training students was an oft-cited reason for nominations. John Sullivan, uses his skills to stage productions on a large scale. (His last production, The Wizard of Oz had a cast of over 300 high school and middle school students.) He trains his students in rigging, set construction, lighting and audio and they do good work, too. A reader writes that their work “rivals professional productions and trumps most local theater.”
All of our winners also are contributing greatly to emerging theatre arts as a whole.

All the high schools nominated were of exceeding quality.
“High school theatre across America is full of vibrant, talented and dedicated people — from the students to the teachers to the supportive parents,” said SD Publisher Terry Lowe. “Every school that keeps theatre alive and available to excited and inquisitive students is worthy of applause, and we are happy to honor these exceptional programs.”

Stage Directions magazine is the nation’s largest independently published technical theatre magazine. Stage Directions recently celebrated its 20th anniversary and can be seen online at

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged) Times Review

'Shakespeare' series finale inventive fun

By Johanna Crosby

August 19, 2008
HYANNIS — Imagine the Three Stooges doing Shakespeare and you get the concept behind "The Complete Works of Shakespeare (Abridged)."

The show was the finale for Barnstable Summer Family Theater's summerlong "Shakespeare by the Sea" series, a part of the Hyannis Harbor Your Arts Festival at Michael K. Aselton Memorial Park. The theater company, which is celebrating its 20th-anniversary season, has been attracting audiences to its free outdoor performances, and Sunday afternoon's show was no exception. About 100 people* in beach chairs clustered in front of the outdoor stage.

The inventive spoof was a perfect choice for fun entertainment in the park. Originally created and performed by the Reduced Shakespeare Company at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 1987, it won the prestigious Olivier Award for best new comedy and became the longest-running comedy in London's West End.

Thirty-seven of the Bard's plays are squeezed into one hour and 20 minutes for a fast-paced, riotous theatrical experience. It helps to have a knowledge of Shakespeare to get the farcical references. But you don't have to be an expert to enjoy this lowbrow show, which is heavy on physical comedy and zany comic bits, including silly sword fights, malfunctioning costumes, funny props and a script spiced with pop culture and local references.

Ed O'Toole's playful direction got the most out of his talented young cast and left plenty of room for improvisation, audience participation and high jinks. The engaging trio (Riley King, Mike O'Toole and Branden Smith) played an array of characters with aplomb. This isn't an easy show to pull off, and they were up to the task. Nimble quick-change artists, they displayed fine comic timing and a flair for physical comedy. O'Toole, who did most of Shakespeare's tragic heroines, is especially amusing.

To make Shakespeare more relevant to a modern audience, they staged the history plays about kings as a sandlot football game, performed "Othello" as a snappy rap song and turned "Titus Andronicus" into a TV cooking show. Shakespeare's 16 comedies got about 45 seconds of stage time in one whirlwind piece, because "his comedies aren't half as funny as his tragedies."

The lanky Riley played a goofy Romeo, who was immediately smitten by Juliet (O'Toole in an ill-fitting jet-black wig and peasant skirt), who rebuffed his amorous advances.

Four entertaining versions of "Hamlet" were presented, including a fast version and one using sock puppets. They even did "Hamlet" backward. But the best part was a scene in which they picked a woman to play a screaming Ophelia and divided the audience into three sections to cheer her on.

Even the Bard used gimmicks in his plays, so he'd probably have gotten a kick out of these wacky interpretations.

*note From John Sullivan "The day this reviewer saw the show there were close to 250 people watching the show - she stated there was almost 100. This part of her observation was an error. She was correct in saying this is a funny, funny show!"

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Stage Directions Magazine votes BHS Drana Club one of five best in the nation!

Magazine: BHS drama club among country's best


August 16, 2008
HYANNIS — Barnstable High School's Drama Club has another reason to celebrate as it marks its 50th anniversary year: It's been chosen one of five top school theater programs in the country by a national theater magazine.

According to club director John Sullivan, he was surprised when he received word Thursday of Stage Directions magazine's 2008 High School Theatre Honors Program and isn't sure who nominated BHS. Award recipients will be announced and featured in stories in the September issue of the magazine, which serves all levels of the theater industry.

Sullivan was told BHS was the New England winner.

In a press release on nominations last month, editor Jacob Coakley said a winner had to be "an over-achiever," not only staging "a dynamic, good-looking and entertaining show" but also laying "a solid foundation of theatre skills" for all students. Factors included number and size of shows, and the performing arts center.

The drama club marked its 50th year with a blockbuster, sell-out "The Wizard of Oz," "The Merry Wives of Windsor" (both repeated this summer with Barnstable Summer Family Theater) and "Fiddler on the Roof." "Oz" was chosen from a nationwide pool to be filmed from auditions to curtain call by Warner Bros. Studio for an Internet-only reality series. Sullivan says Stage Directions was unaware of the Warner Bros. project.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Barnstable Partiot Review of Chicken Little!

Chicken Little full of pun and charm

Written by Mary Richmond

Another ‘eggs-cellent’ BHS production

If you can sit through the Barnstable Summer Family Theater’s production of Chicken Little and walk out without a big smile on your face, perhaps you should be locked up with Foxy Loxy and Merritt the Ferret.
Director Ed O'Toole has once again brought together a hodgepodge of kids of all ages, mixed in some wonderful sets and costuming, sprinkled it with just the right touch of local ad-lib humor (I’m pretty sure the Red Sox were not mentioned in the original) and a corny but funny script to entertain families and the young at heart.
This Chicken Little is based on the Disney movie more than the storybook version many of us grew up with. All the familiar characters are there. There’s Ducky Lucky, Turkey Lurkey, Henny Penny and Booster Rooster. And from the moment the first characters appear on stage in chicken beaks and duck bills, yellow and white bloomers, orange tights and big orange feet you know you are in for a romping good time. O'Toole manages to put many small children on stage doing cute and silly things and in the opening scene, reminiscent of the old Greek chorus, little “peeps” are partially hidden behind sets from which they appear to add their two clucks worth of dialog and puns.
It is difficult when reviewing a play cast with so many young people to mention only a few. The entire cast is filled with positive energy and everyone is obviously having fun on stage. The jokes fly around like chicken feathers and the story moves quickly from the set-up to the infamous “sky is falling” event to the denouement.
The Little Red Hen, played by the capable and funny Breana Cole, is a scene-stealer throughout with her little flock of “peeps” following after her. Ashley Goverman is sweet and earnest as Chicken Little and her sidekick, Maddie Sicard as Ducky Lucky is endearing and engaging. Sicard has all the little duck movements down and makes you smile every time she’s on stage.
Tommy Myers as Booster Rooster is over the top and gets a laugh every time he opens his beak and Shannon Pacella rules the stage every time she appears as the bossy Henny Penny
It’s not all just about the birds. The three little pigs, played by Joey Bearse, Austin Benevides and Hank Rex, know how to steal a scene or two and do it well. The real thieves, however, are Ethan Brown as the sneaky and daring Foxy Loxy and Jason Pacella as the bumbling Merritt the Ferret. Both young men do outstanding jobs in their roles and keep the story rolling along at a good pace. Every time they are on stage they bring humor and action with them.
The play is simple, the story is easy to follow and the puns and jokes never stop coming. The children in the audience absolutely loved it and so did the adults. The costumes and sets are great and as always O'Toole uses the whole auditorium as his theater. There is always action, the performers are “mic-ed” so everyone is heard easily and even the smallest actors are well rehearsed.
Looking for a night out with the kids? You will have an “egg-cellent” time here.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Cast of Chicken Little!!!

Cape Cod Time review of Chicken Little... " Very Worth Seeing!"

July 31, 2008
HYANNIS — "Chicken Little" is bigger than you might expect.

Bigger as in more characters, more costumes, more scenery and, most important, more laughs.

The littlest actors — namely, the brood of seven chicks, are too cute for words. But it's the older kids who turn in performances that elevate this children's story from something relatives must see to 75 minutes that hold appeal for a wider variety of theatergoers.

Story adapters John Sullivan and Ed O'Toole, who also directs, wrote in their drama club blog that they wanted to put in layers that would make this story of the sky falling into a tale for all ages. They've successfully done that, turning Chicken Little (Ashley Goverman in Tuesday's opening night, alternating with Emma Charpentier) into a gullible investigative reporter and Foxy Loxy (Ethan Brown) into a con man who tricks the hens into leaving their coops (places like "Bost-hen" and "Cooperstown") so he can steal eggs.

In this version, Turkey Lurkey (Megan Corrigan) is a spin doctor for the mayor, Booster Rooster (Tommy Myers). In her rumpled trench coat with tail feathers sticking out, Turkey Lurkey lurks around like the offspring of TV detective Columbo and Communist witch hunter Sen. Joseph McCarthy. There may also be a hint of Richard Nixon; it's hard to say.

Any child of the '60s who grew up in front of Saturday morning cartoons will recognize the stuttering but pompous Booster Rooster as reminiscent of Foghorn Leghorn, with his trademark, "I-I-I say, son, I say." But the character also brings to mind the last Democratic president. Either way, Myers nails it.

Henny Penny (Shannon Pacella in a role shared with Caitlin Corrigan) is more like comedian Henny Youngman, stuffed with zingers that make you simultaneously groan and laugh. "She takes three hours at the beauty parlor — for an estimate," HP taunts, talking about the Ugly Duckling (Johanna Regan), the elegant and ugly-no-more swan in a gown and lovely white feathered plume.

There's great chemistry (Can you say that about cartoon characters?) between Foxy Loxy and his dumb sidekick, Merritt the Ferret (Jason Pacella), and between Chicken Little and her sidekick, Ducky Lucky (Maddie Sicard). As Foxy, Brown is a fast talker who even moves slyly, with a balletic grace. It's that quality James Cagney had when playing gangsters. Sicard is hilarious with her bow-legged walk and baseball jersey, evoking TV sportswriter Oscar Madison.

So if you peel back all these layers and references, you have a sweet little tale of a bunch of children's story characters learning important life lessons from their mistakes. But if you happen to be a baby boomer, you get all the inside jokes too. It's very like "Shrek" that way and it's very worth seeing.

On stage

What: "Chicken Little:
A Fractured Fairy Tale"
Presented by: Barnstable Summer Family Theater
When: 7 tonight, tomorrow and Tuesday through Aug. 8
Where: Barnstable High School Performing Arts Center,
744 W. Main St., Hyannis
Tickets: $8
Reservations: 508-771-6246

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


CHICKEN LITTLE Continues the Celebration in
Barnstable Summer Family Theater’s 20th Season

The Wizard of OZ may have left the building, but that doesn’t mean that the Barnstable Summer Family Theater is planning to rest on its laurels and head for the beach just yet, especially in its 20th anniversary season. Hot on the heels of the Cape’s largest musical ever, Producer John Sullivan and Director Ed O’Toole are presenting another of their original takes on familiar stories, in the tradition of their recent favorites like The Lost Treasure of Blackbeard and The Real Untold Story of Cinderella.

This summer, it’s their version of Chicken Little, whose warning that the sky is falling leads to disaster for his barnyard companions at the hands (or claws) of the crafty Foxy Loxy. In the Sullivan-O’Toole rendition, Chicken Little again squares off against that egg-stealing villain, but this time he has a little extra help from a couple of unexpected friends that may just change the outcome of the story.

Chicken Little, a would-be radio news reporter, is hot on the trail of a big scoop, the annual inspection tour of the Egg King when she stumbles on another, even bigger story. According to her sources, a certain Professor von Hokumschlinger and his assistant, Doctor Dummkopf, the sky is falling and the only safe haven for CL’s barnyard companions are the dreaded Deep Dark Woods. What the gullible CL doesn’t realize, of course, is that the nefarious Foxy Loxy disguises himself and his weaselly assistant Merritt the Ferret as von Hokumschlinger and Dummkopf so that the animals will flee the barnyard and leave their treasure trove of eggs unguarded.

True to BSFT tradition, this is a story not just suitable for all ages, but appealing to them as well. O’Toole calls Chicken Little a play “in the tradition of Chuck Jones and Bob Clampett, classic animators whose cartoons are full of puns and jokes that work on more than one level.”
Sullivan adds, “With that kind of humor and the colorful costumes and sets the Summer Family Theater is known for, we think that everyone who got such a kick out of OZ is going to love Chicken Little.”

In fact, quite a few of the young actors who played Munchkins, flying monkeys and citizens of Oz will be in the cast of 40. As always, BSFT casts include a wide range of ages; this year’s cast ranges in age from 6 to 18. “It’s such a great chance for younger children who may not always have a chance to be on stage or have a speaking part to gain experience. We always make sure that everybody on stage has a line or two or some unique bit of stage business that allows him or her to have a ’spotlight’ moment,” O’Toole notes.

“We want to make sure that kids see being on stage as a chance to have fun, no matter their ability, “ Sullivan adds. “Not everybody can sing or dance, but there’s always something individual a person can bring to the production, and we try to find that something.”

Chicken Little opens on Tuesday, July 29 and continues on July 30 and 31 nad August 1, 5, 6, 7, and 8. All shows are at 7 PM in the air-conditioned Barnstable High School Performing Arts Center on West main Street, Hyannis. Tickets are 10 dollars and may be reserved by calling the BHS Drama Club at (508) 771-6246.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Cape Cod Times Review, July 12, 2008

'Oz' delivers wicked good fun

July 12, 2008 6:00 AM

HYANNIS — Got Munchkins? Get them to Oz.

Temporarily (and this is very handy), it's located on West Main Street, in the Barnstable High School auditorium, where the Barnstable Summer Family Theater is reprising the school drama club's wildly popular production of "The Wizard of Oz."

Let's get to the external smasheroo stuff first: This production looks mahvelous, from the elaborate sets (muted-tone cornfields in Kansas, a surreal Munchkinland) to the astonishing handmade costumes (there could not be a yard of primary-color cloth left on the Cape).

Kudos go to set designers John Sullivan (the director), Ethan Brown and Vanessa Varjian and costume queen Karen Mannal, but one can only imagine the army of artists, carpenters and seamstresses required to pull this off.

The special effects (led by Chris Houghton and Chad Goddard) are astonishing and, even in a story we know well, capable of a surprise or two. Suffice it to say that people, witches and houses appear and disappear in satisfying and often amusing ways.

But beneath all the colorful moving parts is a huge cast of talented young people who populate poppy fields (adorable tykes in flower costumes), the electric Emerald City, Munchkinland, creepy forests and the even creepier castle of the Wicked Witch. There are enough townspeople and flying monkeys and forest inhabitants to fill a Hollywood sound stage, and, under Sullivan's direction, they are not background set pieces: They are integral parts of the play. They're terrific.

And they support an equally talented and enthusiastic main cast.

As Dorothy, Kelly Mosher is pitch-perfect, both in lovely voice and in her ability to make us worry about her fate, even though most of us have seen Judy Garland do the same about 1.4 million times. Ethan Brown delivers the most choreographed performance as the forever-flopping Scarecrow, and Shane Harris' Tin Man is suitably sweet. Your heart breaks for the sans-heart woodsman. Of course, Matt Kohler, as the Cowardly Lion, has the juiciest role, and he does not disappoint, conjuring up Bert Lahr in a way that drew gales of laughter from Thursday night's audience.

Arielle Catania gives her Wicked Witch the kind of cackling and menace that has scared generations of children, and Devon Gruenstern provides the opposite — glittery goodness — for Glinda, who makes big-time entrances. (Although almost everything in this production is big-time.)

A shout-out for Joey Bearse, who, once Dorothy lands in Oz, takes over the role of Toto from a real dog. He may not have any actual lines, but he has to scamper around like crazy on that stage (and beyond), and he never lets up.

...let me note here that the dialogue from the 1939 movie, courtesy of screenwriters Noel Langley, Florence Ryerson and Edgar Allan Woolf, comes shining through. You forget how apt lines like "Some people without a brain do an awful lot of talking" were then — and are now.

And the songs by Harold Arlen and E.Y. Harburg, from the achingly poignant "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" to the hilariously goofball "If I Were King of the Forest," are paid well-justified homage by this delightful cast, aided by some fine local musicians in the orchestra.

Of course, we all have L. Frank Baum to thank for the original book. His wickedly good idea has endured quite nicely through the years.

on stage

What: "The Wizard of Oz"

Performed by: Barnstable High School Drama Club
Presented by: Barnstable Summer Family Theater
When: 7 p.m. Tuesday through Friday
Where: Barnstable High School Performing Arts Center, 744 W. Main St., Hyannis
Tickets: $10
Reservations: 508-771-6246

Monday, July 7, 2008

Hyannis 4th of July Parade.

The Hyannis Main Street 4th of July Parade - Our float won the Grand Marshall Award!

4th of July Parades!!!

Pictures from the West Barnstable Parade 9:30am July 4th.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Over the Rainbow.

This photo was taken by our friends at WQRC across the street!

Friday, April 11, 2008

More Pictures from the OZ production!

The Wizard of OZ in pictures.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Let us know what you thought of the show!

If you'd like to let the Drama Club know what you thought of the recent Wizard of OZ production, just add a comment. Thanks for coming to the show. It was the Biggest in Drama Club History and a great way to celebrate the 50th birthday of the Drama Club.

Friday, April 4, 2008

From the Barnstable Patriot

KATHLEEN SZMIT PHOTO-THE SWEET SMELL OF RECOGNITION – Joyce Arlington poses amidst 50 red roses and a commemorative plaque honoring her for starting the Barnstable High School Drama Club in 1958. Arlington was recognized following intermission of the opening night performance of The Wizard of Oz.

BHS Drama Club creator takes center stage

Written by Kathleen Szmit

Joyce Arlington’s idea a major force 50 years later

When Joyce Arlington sparked the idea to create a drama club at Barnstable High School in 1958, she had no clue that it would become the revered organization it is today.

On last week’s opening night of The Wizard of Oz, the BHS Drama Club’s spring production, Arlington was recognized in a special mid-show ceremony.

Following intermission, Shakespeare teacher Ed O’Toole called Arlington onstage where each of the five main characters of the play, including Toto, presented her a bouquet of 10 red roses, one for each year of the club’s existence.

O’Toole offered praise to Arlington for her contribution to the school, noting the thousands of students who have benefited from participating in the club through the years.

Arlington, who has attended club shows through the years, wasn’t expecting the attention.

“It was a total, total surprise,” she said, noting that it was research conducted by O’Toole and others that revealed her role as founder of the original club.

“It was 1958 and we had moved from High School Road to West Main, our first year in the new big school,” Arlington said in a phone interview this week. “I was a junior. I had come to Barnstable from off-Cape, so I was at the old school a year and the new school a year.”

Because Arlington was not drawn to sports or the clubs that existed at the time, she longed for an activity that would fit her needs while possibly appealing to other students as well.

“I think there were a couple of things that inspired me to start the club,” she said. “I had this dream that maybe I could be an actress, and I wanted to belong. I wanted to do something that I could be a part of.”

Arlington went to Principal Briah K. Connor about the idea of starting a drama club.

“He said, ‘Go find yourself an advisor’ and he’d support it,” said Arlington.

The club’s first advisor was Elliot McSwan, a BHS teacher who acted in amateur theatrical shows at the Cape Cod Melody Tent in summers.

“I felt that Mr. McSwan would be a good advisor because he had that interest,” Arlington said.

Unfortunately, Arlington learned during auditions for the club’s first show that her acting skills were, ahem, not up to snuff.

“My own acting career kind of fizzled,” she said. “I had my first tryout and I was so nervous I couldn’t speak the words. But I am a born organizer. I love to start things and bring people together. I have a knack for seeing the big picture. I definitely was behind the scenes.”

Although Arlington’s acting career never took off, life offstage has been busy for the Dennisport resident. Following graduation, she attended college and ultimately earned her masters in nursing, working since 1973 as a nurse practitioner, first through New England Baptist Hospital, and now at Preventative Medical Associates in Yarmouth.

An avid traveler, Arlington has visited Europe, been a self-proclaimed ski-bum in Colorado, and with friends even chaperoned the first US Olympic luge team.

Arlington returned to Cape Cod in 1994 during what she quietly called a “dark period” of divorce and illness.
“I came to visit my aunt,” she said. “I came for a weekend and never left.”

Upon returning to the Cape, Arlington reconnected with classmates from the BHS class of ‘59.
“We’re all very tight,” she said. “We’re a very close class.”

Back in her high school days, Arlington became secretary of the drama club, which in 1958 and 1959 had one production a year, then known as the Senior Show.

It was only recently that Arlington realized how big her little idea had grown.

“I have to admit that I was in total shock,” she said. “I had heard people talk about the Drama Club, but I never realized it was as big as it was. I’ve known that it’s been involved, but I had no idea how involved.”

Arlington was impressed to learn that shows occur year-round, with two major productions a year, a Shakespeare play, and Shakespeare and family theatre in the summer.

“We had 20 kids in 1959,” she said, marveling at the 300-plus cast of The Wizard of Oz.

What impressed Arlington in the 1950’s was that, although the club was small, students from all classes tried out for shows.

“What was evident in our first production was that we got kids from all the classes to try out, not just one class,” she said. “That was a little taste of what was to come.”

Arlington credits Drama Club head John Sullivan for helping the program to flourish.

“It started to develop under [Jim Ruberti] and John really started flying with it. He brought his artistic talent to it,” she said. “He brings a lot of connections to the Drama Club and reaches so many people.”

Arlington also offered kudos to O’Toole for his involvement with the Shakespeare productions.

“They are the proof of the importance of teachers and how important it is that they care about kids,” she said.
On opening night Sullivan took Arlington to the “old auditorium” (Knight Hall) and caught her up on the club’s history. Arlington also talked with technical director Steve Bearse and costume designer Karen Mannal.
Arlington enjoyed meeting the folks that came up to her following the show to thank her for creating the club.
“I just realized the extent to which the Drama Club has reached people,” she said. “I’m still absorbing the whole thing, by the way.

“The club just makes me happy because kids are our biggest resource. Children: raising them, caring for them and their education is most important. I see what kids get in trouble with out in the world and I wish there were more places for kids to go. This is meeting a real need. I know how it touches lives and how important it is.”

So what did the founder of the Drama Club think of its 50th anniversary production?

“It was fabulous,” she said. “I loved how Broadway it was. It’s amazing to me!”

Although Arlington doesn’t generally make a big deal about the drama club being her brainchild, she deeply appreciated the recognition.

“I’m thrilled and I have to say a little proud,” she said. “And amazed that they would give me that recognition. It was a sweet, sweet joy.”

Thursday, April 3, 2008

The Wizard of OZ will Return this Summer!

Don't worry if you can't get tickets to this production, the Wizard of OZ will return July 10, 11, 15 - 19. All shows will be held in the Barnstable High School Performing Arts Center and showtime is 7pm. We are not accepting reservations at this point - but watch for that announcement real soon!

Wizard of OZ - the Review - the Barnstable Patriot

Wizard wows at Barnstable High School
Written by Kathleen Szmit

When Barnstable High School Drama Club President Matt Kohler said that The Wizard of Oz would be the club’s best show ever, he wasn’t simply trying to sell tickets. He was right.

Expectations were great for the much-ballyhooed production, buzzed about since it was revealed that its every detail was to be filmed for a WB Webcast. In spite of, or perhaps because of, the pressures, the cast and crew did not disappoint.

Even before the curtain rose over the stage of the Performing Arts Center at BHS for the first performance on March 28, every seat in the expansive auditorium was filled.

When that curtain rose, all 1,400 let out a collective gasp at the detailed set, intricately painted by Ethan Brown, Vanessa Varjian and Jess Emerson. For a short while it felt as though everyone truly was in Kansas; the scenery was that realistic.

Then the real magic began, with the Ozian Cast, one of three selected by director John Sullivan, taking folks along on a wonderful adventure.

The first time I saw The Wizard of Oz movie, on which the BHS production is based, I was barely out of toddlerhood. Although terribly frightened by the witch and her flying monkeys, I was hooked and it became a tradition when it was on TV to watch, peeking through the blankets when the witch’s green face appeared.

As I watched Oz unfold onstage at BHS, I was immediately transported back to those days of innocence and the spectrum of emotions evoked by the storyline.

When folks know a show it can be difficult to impress, especially because your audience might be looking for familiarity. The BHS Drama Club took that concern to heart and created a production that even the cast of the MGM classic would be proud of.

From her mannerisms to her speaking voice, it was as though Kelly Mosher, in the role of Dorothy, was channeling Judy Garland herself. Doubters were duly silenced when Mosher sang the favorite tune, “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” flawlessly.

Dorothy’s traveling companions, Chris Houghton as the Scarecrow, Shane Harris as the Tin Man, and Kohler as the Lion were equally outstanding, boasting smooth singing voices and nailing the quirky characteristics of each role.

The Totos, both the real pup and the Oz Toto, deserve mention as well. The actual canine, Callie Meyers, was spectacularly well behaved and the epitome of cute, while Jack Wood as the Oz Toto, was equally adorable in his doggie portrayal.

Let’s not forget the witches. Molly Handel captured the enchanting essence of Glinda the Good Witch, while Jess Emerson was spot-on as The Wicked Witch of the West. From her green face to her perfect voice, I was left wishing for blankets to peer through.

Especially impressive was that each actor added his or her own special flavor to a role while maintaining the original and much-loved affectations of those from the 1939 cinematic gem.

To mention each performer and show highlight would require space this paper doesn’t have. There are so many: the adorable and brightly dressed Munchkins, the festive field of poppies, the swarm of Flying Monkeys, including two who really flew, and more. Each moment brought a new feast for the senses.

Of course, it wouldn’t be The Wizard without the music. Backed by a sizeable orchestra conducted by Michael Gross, the BHS production included each of the beloved tunes from the film, while adding in two that had been cut in 1939 -- “The Jitterbug” and a medley of “Ding Dong the Witch is Dead” and “Merry Old Land of Oz.”

Caitlin Gardipe, one of the production’s three Dorothys, also had the task of choreographing the show, including the energetic “Jitterbug” dance featuring a stage full of Jitterbuggers accompanying the song.

The costume crew, helmed by Karen Mannal, deserves immense praise for hand-sewing each Flying Monkey suit, poppy flower, and Munchkin lapel. Every outfit was beautifully detailed.

Fortunately, the quick-thinking cast revived the momentum by finding a way to segue into the next tune, barely missing a beat.

Throughout the show I had to repeatedly remind myself that this was a high school production. Given the complex sets, the dynamic effects, the singing and acting talent, and the stunning costumes, it’s no wonder. My only disappointment is in not being able to see every cast.

Because of the popularity of this monumental production, however, I might be able to sneak in one more viewing, as Sullivan and his crew have added an extra show to accommodate those unable to get tickets to the rest of the sold-out performances.

I hope everyone gets to see this show for it is well worth its ticket price. Like the Great Wizard says, “It is not how much you love that matters, but rather how much you are loved by others.”

This show is one to love!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

A letter to the Drama Club from the Honorable Senator Edward M. Kennedy

Photos by Russ Price

Russ Price has taken pictures of the cast and show - they are worth a look.

here's all you have to do:

The Wizard of Oz Photo Website will only be active until April 12th.
Go to this web site:
Register your e-mail address and enter the password provided.
The password for BHS Wizard of Oz is: oz
Click on the first image and then click on the Slide Show button.
Please click on any image to view a larger version. Add to shopping cart, if you would like a print made.
Enter ordering information and include payment with credit card. Your photo order will be processed and mailed to you directly.
Pass this info to your fellow cast members, family and friends.
Any questions, please contact the photographer: e-mail Russ Price or call him at 508-420-5581.

Monday, March 31, 2008



The Wizard of OZ will hold one more show Sunday April 6th at 6pm. Get your tickets now why they last!!!! phone number for reservations 508 771 6246. - please be patient - people are calling night and day and in between classes students will empty it.

The Wizard of OZ - 2008 click for larger view

The Wizard of OZ - 2008

The Wizard of OZ - 2008

The Wizard of OZ - 2008