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Feather River Bulletin
Quincy, California
May 9, 2012     Feather River Bulletin
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May 9, 2012

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Bulletin, Record, Progressive, Reporter Wednesday, May 9, 2012 1B REGIONAL Portola Debra Moore Staff Writer When 18-year-old Jennifer ................ l INSIDE SECTION B: EDITORIAL AND OPINION • UPCOMING EVENTS  :: ............................................. @ r i s e to ..  , t e e n She has sung with the Portola High School show choir for two years and has acted in three drama class productions at the high school. TTT! . 1 1 ¥¥11U11 D.KICU ]J bllt2 •lla8 ally actors have been up to the challenge. "I am always amazed at the talent that we have here," Gallagher said. "Jennifer has been great, Sire ha bell working so 1'962 and follows the efforts of plump teenager Tracy Turnblad to dance on the Corny Collins Show. Tryouts took place in tJallL2dl y, W Itll 81ZL IIIHIV lUUil8 i00a00rspray g * 9 vv lz,xz ,LU-.y €.xl. -UXU UIIllliE;L Wright steps on stage tonight, her biggest fan will be in the audience. "My mum is always saying, 'You're going to do this. You're going to do well,'" Wright said. "This" is the lead role in "Hairspray," the Feather River College production that runs May 9 - 13 at the Town Hall Theatre in Quincy• The Portola High School senior sang and danced her way into the coveted part of Tracy Turnblad. "This is' the first time we have had such a huge spectrum of performers," said the musical's director, Terry Gallagher. "It's really • been great to have actors from across the county." In addition to Wright, there are five other actors from Portola, two from Chester, two from Indian Valley and the rest from the Quincy area. "Hairspray," the musical, is set in Baltimore, Md., in Corny Collins Show. It yUtltO LUUJ _U 1 Ct L, I::; 111 January, with six individuals auditioning for the role of Tracy. Wright and three others received a call back and were told .they would be notified later that night by email. Wright couldn't access her mail, but received a 2 a.m. phone call from a friend telling her that she landed the lead. "I started crying and went and woke my mum up," Wright said, during an intei - view last week. "My mum said she was really proud of me and knew that I could do it." Landing the role is a dream come' true for Wright, who grew up watching "Grease," "Dirty Dancing," "Little Shop of Horrors" and "Hairspray" over and over. "I watched them so many times, I memorized all of the lines," she said. But when it comes to per- forming in front of others, Wright is a relative newcomer. three drama class productions elL Lilt::: lllLll ablll,)t)l. When asked if she has any butterflies yet, Wright just smiles and says, "No, I'm just having fun." She said that people have advised her to "just be myself' and "to be calm." It's easy for her to be calm when she is singing, but she admits to having.a few qualms when she is dancing the "Mashed Potato." "She's a great dancer," Gallagher said. "Gary (Klivans, drama and music teacher at PHS) has that show choir and these kids can sing and dance -- they are dauntless." Wright has had ample time to learn the dances as thecast has been rehearsing three nights a week for the past couple of months. Rehearsals ramped up last week. "Musicals are unbeliev- able," Gallagher said. "They are the triple threat -- singing, acting, dancing -- they take more rehearsal•" She said that the local have here," Gallagher said. IJt,Jlll|lt':,l IlPlh LPHI',II I=IHP]I. She has been working so hard, but I think having fun, too." Wright said she is having a great time with the best part being "becoming a family with my cast members, being so comfortable, around them." The cast include students from Quincy and Portola high schools, as well as Feather River College, .and several adults, including Salvatore "Sam" Catalano, of Taylorsville, and Dr. Jeff Kepple, from Quincy. If Wright has her way, she too will be acting into adulthood• After she gradu- ates from Portola High School, she plans to attend Feather River College for two years and then transfer to the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Los Angeles• "Ever since I was little I have been obsessed with movies and acting," Wright said. "I am a drama nerd." Portola High School senior Jennifer Wright stars as Tracy Turnblad in the Feather River College production of "Hairspray." "Hairspray" cast of characters Tracy Tumblad: Jennifer Wright Corny Collins: Jeff Kepple Edna: Nate Dunn Penny: Claire Kepple Velma: Mary Shelters • Amber: Kristina Marr Link: Garrett Hagwood ;aweed Stubhs: Fmmanue! Lemnah Link: Garrett HagWood .... t ........ I PI..I-I-- e . I J(2VVU DLUUU, r'lllllldllUUI Lemnah Little Inez: Whitney Maclntyre Motormouth Maybelle: Karl Tibbedeaux Wilbur: David Riley Prudy: Jennifer Kaufmann Mr. Pinky/Principah Sam Catalano Gym Teacher/Jail Matron: Kim Carroll Spritzer/Guard: Bob Shipp Additional Guard: Jaramie Bodenham The Dynamites: Suzanne Ross, Natalie Kepple, Samantha Williams Council members JoAnne: Rikki Gregorich Brenda: Nina Martynn Shelly: Leann Kennedy L'ou Anne: Martha Wright Peggy: Kendal Hicks Tammy: Ava Hagwood Brad: Harley Sears Fender: James Shipp Sketch: Dalton Riley IQ: Pat Steffanic Detention members Lilah: Taelyr Keely Stooie: Alex Chatrapachai Cindy: Cheyanne Black-Lanouette Lorraine: Sara Rhodes Duane: John Flosi Ensemble member at large Jaramie Bodenham Penny (Claire Kepple) strikes a pose during a song and dance number for the musical "Hair- spray." It opens tonight at the Town Hall Theatre in Quincy and runs through a Sunday matinee. Amber (Kristina Marr) vies with Tracy Turnblad (Jennifer Wright) to determine who has the best hair. In their real lives, Marr and Wright are classmates at Portola High School. High School. Many of the cast members from "Hairspray" take a break on the Portola High School bleachers after performing for the student body during an assembly Thursday, May 3. Hairspray show times Wednesday, May 9, through Saturday, May 12, at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, May 13, at2 p.m. Tickets $10 in advance; $12 atthe door Corny Collins (Dr. Jeff Kepple) leads the teens who are appearing On his show in a song and dance number. ' Photos by Debra Moore