MCHS’s ‘Guys and Dolls’ rolls big laughs
Craig The cast of Moffat County High School’s fall musical, “Guys and Dolls,” gathered before its Friday night performance.
Bouncing around the room while reciting tongue twisters and vocal warm ups, the group sang, laughed and talked about what it needed to improve for the performance that night.
Krista Lawrence, stage manager for the production, said the activities the group was doing were part of a pre-show routine called Tradition.
As they prepared to take the stage, the cast members grabbed hands and began a slow chant of “energy, energy, energy” that crescendoed into a yell.
The show’s second performance went off without a hitch Friday night.
The audience laughed at all the jokes and applauded at the appropriate times. Cast members knew their lines and delivered them clearly to the audience.
Nicole Prestangen as Miss Adelaide, Mitch Romney as Nathan Detroit, Derek Maiolo as Sky Masterson and Caitlin Harjes as Sarah Brown, owned the stage. Gaven Spears as Nicely-Nicely Johnson and Travis Johnson as Benny Southstreet left the audience in stitches with their antics.
Johnson said that he thought the show went well and that the actors improved their performances from Thursday night. He said he wasn’t nervous.
Prestangen said she also felt pretty good about the performance but added she still was a little bit nervous before her performance.
When asked about things she thought could use improvement, Director Heather Dahlberg said a few technical items could be fixed but that she couldn’t want more from her actors.
“There were a couple technical issues that are always there. A microphone or light issue here and there,” Dahlberg said. “But as for my actors, honestly, no.”
Out of the many successes Dahlberg considered the show to have, she said the fact the show had so many numbers where only guys took the stage was awesome.
“Anytime you can get 11 men up there and taking over the stage, I’m always impressed. You can get girls up there. They’re generally more comfortable with the dancing, singing and theatrics. It’s harder to get the guys all up there dancing and everything at the same time,” Dahlberg said. “I want people to be comfortable with these really confident, comfortable and talented men who belong on the stage. It should be recognized, it should be appreciated, and it should be celebrated. They were owning it.”
With a setting in New York City during the 1950s, even the actor’s wardrobes were vintage.
Dahlberg said she spent the whole summer designing costumes for the production adding that many of the costumes were vintage outfits that had belonged to her mother and grandmother, including the hats, dresses and even a mink fur.
Dahlberg said the Colorado Northwestern Community College cosmetology department helped out in a huge way by doing all the hair and makeup for the show.
The musical was the first for Dahlberg to either perform in or direct without her mother attending. Her mother, brother and sister-in-law were killed in a plane crash on the way to last year’s performance.
But Dahlberg said her mom was still there. In every vintage outfit the actors graced the stage with, “Mama D,” as the kids lovingly called Dahlberg’s mom, was there, too.
“My mom’s still here. She was very participatory and a part of everything,” Dahlberg said.
Darian Warden can be reached at 875-1793 or email@example.com
“I want people to be comfortable with these really confident, comfortable and talented men who belong on the stage. It should be recognized, it should be appreciated, and it should be celebrated. They were owning it.”
— Director Heather Dahlberg about some of her actors performances in Moffat County High School's Guys and Dolls