If you have children, or are under the age of 18, chances are you've heard of at least three of those four gentlemen. After this weekend, you may one day boast that you saw the latter on stage when he was in high school.
How To Succeed In Business Without Really Trying is thriving in its third Broadway revival (currently touring), now refined for the high school stage right here in Perry Hall.
“There was a good undercurrent of a fresh take on a show that was written in 1962," director John Pusateri said. "I thought it would be nice to capture that energy with a high school production.”
Check out the photos for a gallery of Thursday evening's dress rehearsal. >>>
Pusateri, a long-time fixture in Perry Hall High School's theater productions, wanted to showcase a strong contingent of leading male actors in a show that has featured the likes of the aforementioned Boy Wizard, Glee heart-throb and teen pop star.
One of Pusateri's perennial principal cast members, Perry Hall junior and budding thespian Anthony Ocampo takes center stage this weekend as the show's lead male character J. Pierrepont Finch.
“That is a huge deal, especially for me, playing or portraying those roles that those three teen heart-throbs played and I’m taking that and making it my own,” Ocampo said.
How To Succeed follows the story of a young Finch, that's F-I-N-C-H, on his way from the mailroom to the boardroom and all of the friends, foes and romantic interests he meets along the way.
"It’s a lot happier, more fun, energetic, enthusiastic. Finch and I are pretty much the same. I feel like I’m up on the stage playing myself,” Ocampo said.
"I have a tendency to play the romantic interest and I’m not sure why,” the confident 16-year-old added.
How To Succeed opens Friday evening at 7 p.m. at Perry Hall High School. Showtimes this weekend include Saturday at 7 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $7 for students and seniors, $10 for adults.
But how can you put a price on arts education?
"Using an educational platform through theatre, it is really essential that the community supports you in learning how to be an artist," Pusateri said. "These students have been working so hard, not only singing and dancing and acting to show their community that are becoming skilled and maybe moving forward to becoming professionals."
"It’s really important to have a community that knows and understands the value of theatre in an educational setting," he continued. "Their support is vital in order to grow new young actors and actresses.”