Vail Valley: Battle Mountain’s ‘Crazy For You’ opens Thursday
Vail, CO Colorado
VAIL VALLEY, Colorado – Tap dancing Vail Valley lacrosse jocks. It certainly puts a picture in your head. Starting Thursday night at Battle Mountain High School, there will be handful of teenage athletes singing and dancing during the school’s production of “Crazy For You.” The musical, a classic Ira and George Gershwin number, runs through Sunday at the Edwards high school.
“There are some people who I never would have expected to see them perform in front of a crowd, much less dance in front of a crowd,” said Makenzie Mueller, 16, referring to some of the lacrosse players. Mueller plays a dancer named Louise in the musical.
Senior Aaron Szindler agreed. “They’re surprisingly good -they all got rhythm,” he said.
The show’s choreographer, Maria Barry, designed numbers that “allow the trained as well as the novice tappers a chance to shine,” said Suzanne Foster, the show’s director.
Before Foster introduced the show, most of the cast members had never heard of Gershwin or seen the musical, Szindler said. But that wasn’t necessarily a bad thing – instead, it allowed the cast to approach it with open minds.
“We got the script and the music. We had to learn the songs, so it’s definitely our own interpretation of it,” Szindler said.
The story line, for those who aren’t familiar, goes something like this:
“Bobby Child (Remsen Allard) escapes from his mother (Ieva Urbaite) and a dull bank job in New York City to Nevada, aka the Old West, where he meets an assortment of lazy cowboys and Polly Baker (Bailey Garton), whom he immediately falls in love with,” Foster wrote in a press release. “To win her heart, he needs to save the old theater, now post office, and puts on a show to do so. Bobby ‘becomes’ Mr. Zangler to organize the show with the Zangler Follies girls and his friend Tess (Jillian Kiss) and Patsy (Susanna DeChant); a plan that works fine until the real Zangler (Aaron Szindler) arrives on the scene. The disguises, mistaken identities and tap dance numbers make this show a must see.”
Mueller was surprised at how much humor there is in the show, she said.
“The story is really funny,” she said. “There’s a lot of funny jokes, lines and dialog between characters that I wasn’t expecting.”
Szindler, who plays the part of Bela Zangler, a Hungarian Broadway producer, delivers some of those zingers.
“It’s been fun,” said Szindler who graduates this spring and plans on attending Metro State in the fall. “I have a lot of fun with accents, and this character definitely needs one. I love doing Vaudeville-style jokes or one-liners, and this one has a lot of one-liners.”
Foster said the musical has been one of the most challenging that she’s ever produced.
“The layers, intensity and harmony of the music is challenging,” she said. “It’s classic Gershwin, so it’s not easy.”
And though learning the songs has been a somewhat formidable task for the cast, Foster is sure it’ll pay off. Audience members will likely recognize the classics, which include “Embraceable You,” “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” “Slap That Bass,” and “I’ve Got Rhythm.”
“‘They Can’t Take That Away From Me,’ that was the theme song for Kodak for years,” she said. “There are going to be songs that people recognize because they’ve heard them in so many different venues.”
High Life Editor Caramie Schnell can be reached at 970-748-2984 or firstname.lastname@example.org.