Tuesday, June 06, 2023

‘Beauty and the Beast’ opens Friday at Quincy High

Staff Writer | March 2, 2023 1:20 AM

QUINCY — A classic tale of love, sacrifice and rediscovering one’s humanity comes to the Quincy High School stage for the next two weekends. The Quincy Drama Club production of “Beauty and the Beast” opens at 7:30 tomorrow at the QHS theater, 403 Jackrabbit St. NE.

Director Haliey Weber said the story is classic because it explores classic themes.

“This is really a story that expresses what happens to us when we lose our humanity,” Weber said. “And how we can’t forget our humanity, and seeing people and connecting with people and loving people, because when we stop we lose who we are, really.”

Performances are at 7:30 p.m. March, 3, 4, 10 and 11; at 2 p.m. March 4 and 11, and 6:30 p.m. March 9. Tickets can be purchased online at the QHS website under the “athletics” tab or at the QHS office before or after school.

“Beauty and the Beast” premiered on Broadway in 1994. It’s the tale of Belle (Hailey Beegle in the QHS production), who loves her books, so much so that everybody else in her village thinks she’s a little odd. Her dad Maurice (Abraham Santiago) assures her that’s not the case - but then Maurice is considered a little odd. Even so, Belle has a good life, with her only problem being Gaston (Alijsha Quintanilla), the conceited guy who doesn’t understand why Belle isn’t swooning over him.

That all changes when Maurice gets lost in the woods; pursued by wolves, he stumbles upon a magical castle and is given refuge - until the castle’s master finds him. The Beast (Abraham Ramirez) was once a handsome, but spoiled and uncaring, prince. His attitude earned him a spell from an enchantress who turned him into the frightening apparition of the Beast. The only way to break the spell is to learn to love someone, and be loved in return.

Belle comes looking for her father and finds him in the castle’s dungeon. The Beast agrees to let him free, but at a price. Belle must agree to stay with him.

The play is based on the Disney movie released in 1991, and it’s Broadway-level music. Weber said the students have spent a lot of time learning the music and working on the elaborate set.

“We have an amazing music director, Kylie Youngren, and we spent the first two weeks in music rehearsals to really pound the music into them,” Weber said. “And every day they do a 10 to 15 minute (practice) of whatever song they’re working on for the day.”

The actors will be supported by a 14-piece orchestra, directed by Youngren.

“All local instrumentalists, so that’s super-cool,” Weber said.

“The kids have the harmonies really well, which is super cool.” she said. “And I think spending time on the music really helped them with dancing. I’ve not really noticed them having problems figuring out where they are in the music. Their harmonies are pretty strong while they’re dancing.”

Assistant director Elyse Goslin is the choreographer.

The student actors on stage are supported by an all-QHS tech crew, Weber said.

“All backstage is run by students, sound and lights are run by students, and also designed by them,” Weber said. “I have 14 tech students that are behind the scenes.”

Weber designed the set which features a castle that’s a beast in itself, 34 feet long, 14 feet high and eight feet deep. The student helped build it and did all the painting under the direction of technical director Bryce Goslin.

Weber said she chose “Beauty and the Beast” because the story appeals to all ages, adults as well as teens.

“Because the program is growing, I’m trying to pick shows that students and the community will recognize to bring people in to support us. If it’s something people recognize and know and love, they’re more likely to come see it. The same with students. They’ll be more excited about it” she said. “We want the community to be involved and to know what we’re doing, especially because (the drama students) are working so hard.”

Cheryl Schweizer may be reached at cschweizer@columbiabasinherald.com.



Despairing and alone, the Beast (Abraham Ramirez) is enraged to find an intruder in his house. The Quincy High School production of “Beauty and the Beast” opens tomorrow and runs for two weekends.



Maurice (Abraham Santiago), right, encounters a magical clock (Jazzlynn Padron), left, who doesn’t want him in the castle.



Belle (Hailey Beegle), left, and her father Maurice (Abraham Santiago), right, reassure each other they’re just fine. Quincy High School’s production of “Beauty and the Beast” opens Friday.



Belle (Hailey Beegle), center, reads on, unconscious of the curiosity of the villagers.

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