Albert Einstein High School GreaseBy Cappies • Mar 14th, 2013 • Category: Cappies
“I got chills, they’re multiplying, and I’m losing control, ’cause the power you’re supplying, it’s electrifying!” Grease, the musical, tackles the stage at Albert Einstein High School with electrifying energy as the cast’s fabulous vocals and vivacious dance numbers sends chills down the audience’s spine.
The favorite teenage musical is back and better than ever! The 1972 version of Grease, written by Jim Jacobs and Warren Casey, was an instant hit, winning several Tony Awards including Best Musical. The jiving, funky spirit of this show could not be contained by the stage, and in 1978 Grease was translated to the screen, featuring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John in a classic American film. The movie and musical follow essentially the same plot: wholesome, goody-two shoes Sandy Dumbroski and rebellious greaser Danny Zuko fall madly in love over summer break, but as summer nights come to an end, the two never expect to see each other again. When Sandy transfers to Rydell High School in the fall, she is overjoyed to discover her sensitive summer sweetheart attends her new school, but Danny is not the same around his gang of renegade teens. Will social differences keep the lovers apart? Clad in poodle skirts, leather jackets, and a whole lot of spunk, a group of raunchy adolescents cope with the trials of being a teenager through singing, dancing, and rock-and-rolling.
In the lead role of Sandy, Abigail Kullberg led the production with enthusiastic aplomb. Her pure, soprano voice was a perfect complement to her consistently innocent, wide-eyed persona. As her love interest Danny Zuko, Eric Teran set the tone of 1950s swank. With sensational vocal conviction, hypnotic charisma, and dance moves as slick as the grease in his hair, Teran infused the production with passion. His vocal range was unbelievably versatile — he hit even the highest of notes with commendable agility. As Teran and his gang of leather-jacket rebels taunted each other and swaggered about the stage, their chemistry played tremendously well, especially during the iconic song “Greased Lightnin’.” Though at times Teran’s and Kullberg interactions left the audience wanting more, the two did exchange several moments of genuine sincerity.
The supporting cast of the production featured multiple scene-stealing actors. Rebecca Bradley, as Betty Rizzo, the sassy, boy-crazy tyrant of the “Pink Ladies” girl gang, employed wonderfully obnoxious sarcasm and priceless, eye-rolling facial expressions, adding a unique sauciness to her character. Carlos Castillo, as Roger, the rabble-rouser known for his unrivaled mooning record at Rydell High, sent eruptions of laughter resounding through the auditorium. In his solo song “Mooning,” his shameless physical comedy tripled the already ample hilarity of the production. Declan Enright, as Eugene Florczyk, the theater’s epitome of all dweebs, made a small role into an outstanding performance through his uproariously awkward dancing and unwavering nerdiness.
Albert Einstein High School’s technical elements were on point for a production bursting with swanky pizzazz. Despite a few sound issues throughout the production, the tech was overall a sweeping success. The chromatic, geometric set, creatively painted in a Mondrian style pattern augmented the explosively colorful atmosphere. Though sets could have been crafted with more attention to detail, they were functionally designed and allowed for dynamic versatility in the acting space. Additionally, the mesmerizing, brightly colored lights, which flashed like streaks of lightning in various scenes, engrossed audience members into the performance.
The Pink Ladies and Greaser gang never fail to impress. In a story brimming with adolescent angst, love, and rebellion, Albert Einstein High School created a retro, rock-and-roll riot that left audiences with the urge to get up and jive.
by Marielle Burt of McLean High School
Photos by Joe McCary
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