Salamanca HS To Perform ‘Kiss Me Kate’

The Salamanca Jr.-Sr. High School Drama Club will be presenting the musical “Kiss Me Kate” on Feb. 15-16, in the school’s auditorium.

“Kiss Me Kate,” originally produced in 1948, is considered Cole Porter’s crowning achievement in the American musical theater genre, garnering an impressive five Tony Awards that year for Best Musical, Best Produced Show, Best Script, Best Score and Best Costumes.

The musical is a play-within-a-play where each cast member’s on-stage life is complicated by what is happening offstage. While getting ready to open a performance of Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew” in Baltimore, producer Fred Graham (Austin Hill) is trying desperately to hold the show together despite the fact that he and his leading lady, Lilli Vanessi (Jill Magara), are not at all getting along since she found out that he is “carrying on” with Lois Lane (Markie Mohr) who is also acting in their production and is in a relationship with Bill Calhoun (Dustan Whitcomb), a compulsive gambler who is also in love with Lois.

Thrown into the mix are a couple of gangsters (Dom Rettberg and Mike Coolidge), Lilli’s assistant Hattie (Therese Friedhaber), Fred’s assistant Paul (Ethan Kenyon), an elderly man named Harry with denture problems (Matt Fuller), some men in tights (Chris John and Nathan Abrams) and a bevy of beautiful dancing girls.

Performances begin at 7:30 each night. Directed by Jonathan R. Wilder, vocal direction by Jamie Newman, choreography by Becky Nannen, piano accompaniment by Mark Lungershausen, produced by Carrie Congdon and performance orchestra conducted by Jonathan R. Wilder, admission to the musical is $6 per person.