Middle School to Present Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr.

Middle School to Present Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr.

Matt Magargee

Malvern Theatre Society’s junior branch is busily preparing for the spring show. ‘Be our Guest’ for a look at this unique program. 

Middle School students at voice rehearsal for MTS / Abron
Middle School students at voice rehearsal for MTS

The Malvern Prep Theatre Society is known across campus for the spring musical. But did you know that the middle school also hits the stage toward the end of the year? Middle schoolers from Malvern, Notre Dame Academy, and Lower Villa participate in a musical of their own each spring. This year’s production is Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, Jr.

There are students who participate in Malvern’s Upper School Theatre Society that missed being on stage so much that they joined the crew of Beauty and the Beast. A handful of MTS members are helping out with this production in positions of management, stage crew, etc.

Even from the start, Phil Daubney ‘15 could not contain his excitement about being a student director of the middle school production. “During the audition process, I was honestly blown away with the talent these kids possessed. Coming from middle school age kids, I wasn’t fully prepared to hear or see how truly passionate the kids are about performing.”

Daubney is co-directing the show with Emma Shackleford ‘16, Villa Maria Academy.

Regardless of prior theatre experience, these middle schoolers are having an amazing time practicing on stage. “Right from auditions, some of the kids were on the more shy side and I knew theatre would do wonders for them,” said Daubney. “These are the kids that I tried to keep relatively in the spotlight, so they get the exposure and experience in front of a lot of people and so they can grow as performers and public speakers.”

Students come for practices on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. During their split rehearsal time, they review the music for the show and also their dance numbers. Anthony Abron ’14 who has been involved with the music side of the production, said, “Going into the production I thought that I was going to be the one imparting a lot of musical knowledge. Instead, the kids have taught me what it means to truly love theater and just let loose and have fun.”

Abron added, “These kids have real talent and when they join the Upper School productions, they will most certainly have the leads.”

Christian Franck ‘18 is starring as Gaston. Other leads in the show include Molly Sorensen of Lower Villa as Belle, Jack Walker as the Beast, Molly McCarthy of Notre Dame as Mrs. Potts, and J.D. DiTriolo and Max Brown as Lumiere and Cogsworth respectively.

These students have been working very hard so come see them perform Beauty and the Beast on May 16th and 17th.

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