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Have You Heard The Newsies?

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Have You Heard The Newsies?

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From rotating sets to fluid choreography, Cass High School’s theater department truly packed a punch with their newest production, Newsies. The musical starts on a wistful morning where two companions, Jack Kelly (played by Cass High senior Christian Humphreys) and “Crutchie” (played by Cass High senior Tyler Rawlins) wax lyrical about a faraway place much better than the unforgiving streets of New York City. As orphaned newspaper delivery boys, they make barely enough to survive already, and when the publisher of the New York World Joseph Pulitzer (Chase Tant) raises the cost of selling papers, Jack and his family of “newsies” lead a strike – one the play draws inspiration on from the 1899 Newsboys Strike. Backed by other contributors like Davey (Andrew Pitts), Les (Elena Bern), Katherine (Grace Weeks), and an amazing ensemble cast, Jack takes on the unfairness of the business and child labor laws, all while dealing with his own personal turmoil and pining romance.

With a show as infamous as Newsies, the Cass High theater department was in for no small task. However, for two weekends in a row, the cast continued to deliver. With outstanding performance in acting, choreography, and vocals, this musical was one of the most well-rounded I had ever seen performed by Cass. Andrew Pitts shares a similar sentiment, saying this show was “one of [his] favorites, the other being Be More Chill.”  The crowd certainly shared its heart-stopping moments just watching Tyler Rawlins perform on one leg – even when pretending to stumble on top of tall props or leaping over castmates’ legs during particularly rigorous choreography. The level of crowd involvement was always exciting, whether the actors and actresses were throwing out papers or pretending to march through the “streets” (in this case being the aisles between the seats). Overall, the experience was a treat for the audience – and the cast members, too, according to Tyler Rawlins. “It was great. The newsies and the cast – everybody was a family.” When asked about what he took away from the show, Chase Tant remarked, “I know that I have a good group of people working on this that I can trust and fall back on.” “It was fun. I miss it a lot,” reflected Giselle Cisneros, a first-time actress for the Cass High theatre department.

For the class of 2019, this was the last performance of the Cass drama department, and Agan and company will be saying goodbye to long-running contributors like CJ McKnight, Tyler Rawlins, Christian Humphreys, Grace Weeks, Austin Williams, Max McCauley, Reese Pirkle, and Anna Marie Boughton. With the explosive performance of the Newsies, all cast members certainly ended with a bang.

 

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Have You Heard The Newsies?