The Music Man hit all the right notes at the Ellen Ewing Performing Arts Center this weekend, as the Saline High School Drama Club presented Meredith Willson’s The Music Man.
Joseph Pryor starred as Harold Hill, a con man who lands in small-town Iowa and poses as a band organizer and leader to sell instruments and uniforms to the citizens. Merredith Zehnder stars as Marian Paroo, a prim and proper librarian and piano teachers. She can see right through him and rebuffs his advances. But when the charlatan helps her younger brother overcome his lisp and social awkwardness, Marian cancels her plan to expose the outsider as she falls in love with him.
Pryor was adept as the gregarious con man and as the affable man who sought to change his ways. While Pryor was the lead actor, Zehnder was the lead singer. She gave a sonorous performance. Zehnder’s straightlaced turn as Paroo was contrasted by Brittany Bryant, who was excellent as her meddling mother. Young Cooper Bush showed remarkable poise as Winthrop, Paroo’s younger brother.
Blake Williams and Cristina Gonzalez starred as Mayor Shinn and his wife. Williams, as the blustery and buffoonish mayor, and Williams, as the oblivious socialite looking, delivered some of the biggest laughs of the show.
Jake White, Brooklyn McLean, Ryan Moore and Jimmy Lancaster were school board members who found their calling as a barbershop quartet. They sang wonderfully on songs like Goodnight Ladies and Sincere.
The Pick-A-Little Ladies,the gossipy friends of the mayor’s wife, were Abby Brown, Maggie Lupton, Nathalie Richter and Jane Altevogt. Dressed in colorful old-fashioned Sunday dresses, they sang and danced in many of the show’s best numbers. Perhaps the highlight of the show came when the ladies merged their peppy “Pickalittle” number with the quartet’s “Goodnight Ladies” harmonies.
Dominic Dorset was a force singing and dancing. The entire dance troupe lit up the stage - especially during the first number of the second act.
Rebecca Groeb was director and Jane Arvidson-Panikkar was vocal director Lisa Holland was choreographer and Scott Cannell directed the pit orchestra. Kristen Glatz was producer.