Bishop Ireton High School How to Succeed in Business Without Really TryingBy Cappies • Mar 28th, 2014 • Category: Cappies
You’d think that for a window washer, there’s not much higher to go. But for J. Pierrepont Finch, climbing the corporate ladder to success is the most exciting prospect on the horizon. Armed with a “how to” book, quick wits, and a sparkle in his eye, the audience watched as Finch charmed his way into the heart of business. Bishop Ireton High School’s production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying captured the ins and outs of a big corporation, and left everyone feeling ready to conquer the world, without really trying.
Adapted from Shepherd Mead’s 1952 novel, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying made its stage debut in 1961 and has continued delighting audiences since. The show chronicles a young man’s rapid rise to corporate success. His charms, white lies, and “how to” guide help Finch navigate the office shark pool, including the inevitable obstacles of a pretty secretary and a blundering nemesis.
Joey Ledonio (Finch) played the suave young business beaver with an earnestness befitting a hopeful black tie. His vocal levels were at a professional level, and tireless physical animation gave him outstanding charisma on stage. Despite his double-dealing ways, the spark Ledonio poured into his character ensured the audience was always on Finch’s side. Angelica Miguel (Rosemary) played an office secretary immediately taken by Finch. Miguel’s strength was in her enchanting vocals, but she was always quietly engaged in her infatuation for the sneaky executive.
Abby Giuseppe played an office secretary, Smitty, and Rosemary’s closest confidant. Her wry humor and blunt deliveries quickly made her an audience favorite (while her rumors of nymphomania made her an office favorite). Rolf Lundberg played the bratty, outrageous failure of a villain to perfection. His role of Bud Frump included an amazing dorky dance sequence. Overall, his failed attempts at corporate weasel-ry were so unsuccessful the audience couldn’t help but adore him.
J.B. Bigley (Diego Rosende) was the boss-man himself. His ridiculous quirks such as his college “grrrroundhog” pride and his secret knitting obsession made him a comical authority figure. Other standouts included the promiscuous Hedy La Rue (Loren Gant), and the timid mail room head Mr. Twimble (Jon Paul Ryan).
The set successfully captured the office atmosphere with multiple levels of offices and an elevator in the lobby. The props however are what truly brought the show together. Various office furnishings, bar charts, and mailroom necessities were all detailed and brought the company world to life. Technically, the show was nearly flawless. Sharply timed light cues were “spot” on, and the sound was consistent with no feedback or drastic mic fallouts. Costumes were notably student created. Their time-period accuracy and general whimsy, bow ties, fuchsia “Paris Originals” and a knitted groundhog sweater, all created an aesthetically stunning performance.
While it was obvious that the cast and crew of Bishop Ireton High School’s performance worked very hard, the performance appeared effortless. It was surprisingly easy to fall in love with every character on stage. After “It’s Been a Long Day with only a few Coffee Breaks,” Bishop Ireton delivered just the right excitement and charm to remind us all of the “Brotherhood of Man.”
by Emilia Brennan of Oakton High School
Photos provided by Bishop Ireton High School
This article can be linked to as: http://washingtondc.showbizradio.com/goto/10301.