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Camden Hills Regional High School

November 8, 2016

Raising Our Voices in Camden Hills Regional High Schools’ Sister Act

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Program cover Rafi Baeza

Raise Your Voice! becomes the central theme of the current musical production at Camden Hills Regional High School’s production of Sister Act. Based upon the hit 1992 Touchstone Pictures’ movie, and with original music by Alan Menken, this upbeat musical is sure to have audience members tapping their toes. When Deloris Van Cartier (Rebekah Schade) takes refuge in a convent after having witnessed a murder at the hands of her boyfriend Curtis (Nick Watts), she discovers that she has a gift that is even greater than her star-struck dreams of being on the stage – sharing the power of music. As the nuns discover the joy of raising their voices and “shaking their booties” they, including Deloris, also begin to discover a new strength and resolve inside of themselves.

Photo Marti Stone

Musical theater, with its costumes, lights, dancing, and amazing sets is a spectacle for the whole community to enjoy. Yet parents of impressionable young children are cautioned that the directors have rated this show PG 13 for violence and suggestive language. Some children may simply enjoy the chance to see live theater; and parents may find that the story line is a springboard for important conversations. In Sister Act, musical theater becomes instructive as well as entertaining. The subject of domestic abuse becomes an undercurrent in an otherwise light and humorous story. The writers have presented this serious topic in a comedic manner by distracting the listener with zany “thug” characters. However, as we look closer at the material, we find that the theme of “raising one’s voice” is the lesson embedded in the story line. Within the plot, tension mounts in the finale of the show as Curtis discovers where Deloris is hiding and makes plans to “keep her silent” for good. In solidarity, the sisters of the convent (including the rigid character of Mother Superior (Molly Mann)) raise their voices and make a vow to protect Deloris.   In addition, Deloris finds her own voice, and takes a powerful stand against Curtis – with the strength of her sisters, she is able to “raise her voice” and stand up to the bully. The theme of justice prevails, as we find out what happens to Curtis and his thugs in the final number.

Photo Marti Stone

On Broadway, Sister Act was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical. With Lyrics by Glenn Slater, Book by Cheri and Bill Steinkellner, and Additional Book Material by Douglas Carter Beane, Sister Act is being presented by CHRHS in special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). www.MTIshows.com

The CHRHS production of Sister Act will play November 4, 5, 11, 12 at 7:00 PM and November 6 at 2:00 PM.   Advance ticket sales are $12 for Reserved (front section) seats and $10/$6 for General Admission. At-the-door prices increase to $15/$12/$8. Tickets can be purchased in advance online at stromtickets.com or reserved by calling 236-7800 ext 282. Email stromtickets@gmail.com for ticket orders and more information.

 

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