Robinson Secondary School HairsprayBy Cappies • Jun 4th, 2013 • Category: Cappies
When segregation on a popular teenage T.V. show threatens to tear the city of Baltimore apart, an unlikely hero emerges in the form of a slightly chunky, and spirited, girl named Tracy Turnblad who just wants to dance and have fun. Robinson’s production of the popular musical Hairspray professionally blended both the lighthearted, fun musical numbers with the serious underlying theme of acceptance and love.
The musical Hairspray, which is about a teenage girl’s mission to end segregation on the popular T.V. segment “The Corny Collins Show” while getting the guy of her dreams, and winning the highly coveted Ms. Teen Hairspray award, was written by Mark O’Donnell and Thomas Meehan. It was nominated for twelve Tony’s in 2003, winning eight, including Best Musical.
Despite having an incredibly large cast, Robinson’s production of Hairspray felt both professional and fresh. Every character was dedicated to the demanding musical numbers like “Run and Tell That” and “You Can’t Stop the Beat,” and the vocals were equally as impressive. Tracy’s character development was completely on point, and her supporting cast members did a great job authenticating the various character relationships and bonds. Even though the story of Hairspray revolves around the racial inequality in 1960s Baltimore, characters like Wilbur, Penny, Edna, and Motormouth Maybelle brought much appreciated humor to their roles, leaving the audience gasping for air!
Although not the strongest vocalist onstage, Hannah Sikora did a fantastic job portraying the larger than life, star-struck Tracy Turnblad! The ease in which she flitted around the stage, shaking what her mama gave her, made it quite clear that she was full heartedly committed to the role, and had put in a lot of rehearsal time. Her love interest, the dashing heart throb Link Larkin (Jamie Green), had a beautiful voice which really showed through in his solo, “It Takes Two,” keeping the girls in the audience swooning. His chemistry with Tracy was completely believable, and there was a real sense of devotion between the two.
The supporting cast was equally impressive, with stunning vocals by Michael Lamar who played Motormouth Maybelle, the mother of Seaweed and Little Inez. After an incredible rendition of “I Know Where I’ve Been,” everyone in the audience stood and clapped thunderously for what felt like a true Broadway performance! Tracy’s parents Edna (Jackson Viccora) and Wilbur (Spencer Boyd) were equally amusing, and did a fantastic job in the funny song “(You’re) Timeless to Me” about growing old together and becoming more self-accepting. The vicious mother-daughter duo, Velma (Rachel Van Meter) and Amber Von Tussle (Carys Meyer), were great vocalists and had incredible facial expressions which conveyed every emotion from disgust towards Tracy and her “negro” friends to superficial sweetness as Amber competes for the Ms. Teen Hairspray award. Both girls did a great job feeding off one another, and ganging up on Tracey and her friends. If it is possible to steal a show, then Penny Pingleton (Katie Rogers), Tracy’s nerdy and awkward friend, did just that! Her timing was great, and the rapid arm flapping she did to curb perspiration was hilarious. Both Penny’s awkward interactions with Seaweed and humorous remarks were endearing and funny to watch!
Several cool lighting techniques were used throughout the show such as the rainbow backdrop and Tracy’s jail cell. The costuming and sets were period appropriate, and the makeup (especially Motormouth’s drag makeup) was very impressive.
Robinson’s production of Hairspray was an incredibly enjoyable performance, with its fair share of professional-quality moments, strong vocals, and convincing characters!
by Halie Beard of Bishop Ireton High School
Photos by Sarah Irving
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/9555.