Eagle Valley High School Drama Club sings and dances its way through ‘Alice in Wonderland’ | VailDaily.com

Eagle Valley High School Drama Club sings and dances its way through ‘Alice in Wonderland’

From left, Madison Baldwin, the White Rabbit, Elena Ortiz, Alice and Madison Shahan, Cheshire Cat, rehearse for "Alice in Wonderland" Tuesday at Eagle Valley High School in Gypsum. The play opened last night and runs through Saturday.
Christopher Dillmann | Special to the Daily |

If You Go ...

What: “Alice in Wonderland,” Eagle Valley High School’s spring musical.

When: 7 p.m. Friday, March 25, and Saturday, March 26.

Where: Eagle Valley High School auditorium, 641 Valley Road, Gypsum.

Cost: Adults $12, students/seniors $7, children 5 and younger $3.

More information: For tickets, call 970-328-5813 or 970-328-1980. It’s a presentation of the Eagle Valley High School Drama Club.

Alice in Wonderland cast

• Elena Ortiz, Alice

• Ashlyn Laidman, French Mouse

• Elli Lubbers, Lory

• James Quenon, Caterpillar

• Brooke Cabin, Duchess

• Madison Shahan, Cheshire Cat

• Gordon Yoder, Dormouse

• Dylan Harvey, King of Hearts

• Jack Helmering, Knave of Hearts

• Jeff Johnson, Mock Turtle

• Belkis Palacio, Door No. 1

• Zoe Ramsay, Door No. 3

• Britton Johnson, Flora Dasy

• Michael Orapello, Tweedledee

• Keith Buckelew, Tweedledum

• Ryan Boeke, Walrus

• Carter Baker, Baby

• Bronwyn Crick, Court/Oyster

• Brielle Kromer, Croquet Ball

• Madison Baldwin, White Rabbit

• Avery Doan, Duck/Oyster

• Eden Baker, Dodo

• Lesley Molinar, Butterfly

• Jaime Trudeau, Cook

• Natalie Marner, March Hare

• Josh Chiocca, Mad Hatter

• Hannah Foster, Queen of Hearts

• Kalista Famer, Table/Oyster

• Han Taagen/Gryphon

• Anni Vasquez/Door No. 2

• Kaylene Richardson, Soloist/Oyster

• Alyssa Barry, Dora Dasy

• Richard Nguyen, Carpenter

¨• Haley Carpenter, Court

• Kayla Hetei, Court

• Lydia Loupe, Court

if, as Lewis Carroll writes, “Imagination is the only weapon in the war against reality,” make peace with yourself and catch Eagle Valley High School’s spring musical, “Alice in Wonderland.”

It’s a delightful romp through Carroll’s imagination — and yours. The Eagle Valley High School Drama Club’s production opened Thursday and runs through Saturday, with performances at 7 p.m.

Carroll asks, “Have I gone mad?

James Overcash, faculty director answers.

“I’m mad, you’re mad, we’re all mad here. If you think we’re crazy, you’re right!” he said.

“If you don’t know where you are going, any road can take you there.”

In the midst of the wonderfulness and madness is Michelle Ramirez, the production manager and the eye of this particular storm.

That means she’s in charge of herding characters dressed like dream sequences and doing everything from helping the Mad Hatter keep track of his hat, to keeping the Cheshire Cat smiling, to four people dressed like a black hole. You know, the black hole Alice falls into.

The cast and crew are a spirited group. So far, about the only crisis Ramirez has not had to handle is some wise guy shutting off all the lights so the black hole people can hide in plain sight.

“We wanted it to be fun for us and the audience, a production they would always remember,” Ramirez said. “It’s a magical world created entirely in Alice’s imagination.”

When picking the production, they kicked around ideas for a while, when someone said jokingly, “How about ‘Alice in Wonderland?’” And that, as they say, was that.

They started in January with auditions and launched straight into rehearsals.

“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

Pat Sheehy is Eagle Valley High School’s musical director. He has not been doing these for longer than he can remember, because he can remember a really long time. What he can’t remember is exactly how many productions he has done. He used to know, and knows people who know, but during dress rehearsals, he had other things to know about, like all the songs in the musical version of “Alice in Wonderland.”

As we were chatting, he started to count the songs in “Alice in Wonderland.” He got to something like eleventy-twelve when people started peppering him with questions. He stopped counting. But he did keep track of the music, which is really good — the music, we mean, but Sheehy, too.

“There’s not much dialogue. It goes from song to song, lots and lots of songs,” Sheehy said, smiling.

“and go on till you come to the end: then stop.”

The cast is massive.

Michael Orapello is Tweedledee, not Tweedledum. That’s Keith Buckelew. And how do you tell the difference?

“I’m not dumb,” Orapello said.

Neither is Buckelew, who is also playing a Four of Diamonds because, he said, “Four is my favorite number, and I like diamonds!”

James Quenon is the caterpillar, the one who blows smoke and asks, “Who are youuuu?”

“Curiouser and curiouser!”

“It’s not just the strangest party I’ve ever been to, it’s the strangest play,” Overcash said.

And that leads in a Wonderlandian route back to our original question:

“Have I gone mad?”

“I’m afraid so, but let me tell you something, the best people usually are.” — Lewis Carroll