‘Seussical the Musical’ captivating on melodies as well as acting talent

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Katie Welch is one of many colorful characters—in flair and acting skills—in Prairie du Chien’s “Seussical the Musical.” She, of course, plays the part of the Cat in the Hat. The public can enjoy one of several whimsical performances of the high school fall musical this weekend in the new performing arts center. (Photo by Correne Martin)

By Correne Martin

Area music lovers will have a special opportunity to see a high school musical with captivating, diversified melodies when “Seussical the Musical” hits the freshly completed stage of Prairie du Chien High School’s new auditorium this weekend. The entire cast, from the leads to the ensemble, are commended by the musical’s directors for working as hard as they have to learn and perfect the songs, according to Deedee Bradshaw, musical director and first-year choral teacher at PdCHS.

“When you listen to the sound track, it makes the music sound easy, but this is a hard musical,” Bradshaw said. “The students put a lot of work into this.”

She encouraged the public to come to the fall musical either Friday or Saturday, Nov. 9 and 10, for 7 p.m. shows, or on Saturday for the 11 a.m. performance.

“I think audiences will be shocked about the music,” she shared. “You might expect it to be kind of childish but there’s actually quite a variety. There’s a lot of soul and R&B in it.”

She also believes ticket holders will be amazed at the acting and vocal talent of some of the community’s youngest performers. “It’s a silly play and some of them are really breaking out of the box with their acting.”

Lead characters in the musical include the Cat in the Hat, Sour Kangaroo, Horton the Elephant, Mr. and Mrs. Mayor, the Wickersham Brothers and the Bird Girls. 

Bradshaw added that about 25 middle school choir members are also in the musical, as Whos. They’ve been working on projection this year, she noted. 

In addition to Bradshaw, middle school teacher Dale Hanson is back in a director’s role this year, though he’s focused more on technology and lighting. Along with tech ed teacher Ron Kucko and his students, and the returning Lisa Miller, Hanson has pulled together a vibrant, whimsical set and backdrops for “Seussical.” The crew was making final touches in this area yet this week. 

Leading the acting and taking the general directorship of the musical is another new face, Khloe Mlynarczyk, who teaches seventh grade math. 

Matt Lenz, band and general music teacher, is the technician working the new auditorium’s sound boards this year, and a couple of talented women from the community helped create the playful and eccentric costumes.

To tweak and polish the students’ vocal efforts in “Seussical,” Richard Moses, a choir director from Onalaska, was brought to Prairie as a clinician as well. 

“He’s done this musical about four times so he knows it really well. He knows the style it should be and is able to nit-pick things,” Bradshaw commented.“It’s been such a collaborative effort.”

All are invited to “Seussical the Musical” this weekend for some merry entertainment. And, if you have a chance, enjoy the “Green Eggs and Ham” fundraiser breakfast at 9:30 a.m., at the high school, for the full Dr. Seuss effect.

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