Succeed they did: a scene from the Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

Succeed they did: a scene from the Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.

An inspired and inspiring performance

There’s something about live theatre and music that stirs the soul and gladdens the heart in ways that must be experienced to be understood. Red Deerians were privileged to partake of just such an experience recently as students from Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School ended their run of the Broadway musical comedy How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying to packed and cheering audiences.

There’s something about live theatre and music that stirs the soul and gladdens the heart in ways that must be experienced to be understood.

Red Deerians were privileged to partake of just such an experience recently as students from Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School ended their run of the Broadway musical comedy How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying to packed and cheering audiences.

Attempting to recreate a Tony-award winning production that has intrigued audiences with numerous reincarnations over the past 50 years was a tall order for students at our local high school, but these young actors did not disappoint.

In fact, they far surpassed the expectations of this casual theatregoer in a major way — the kids smashed an absolute home run out of the ball park!

Every aspect of this complex production — singing, dancing, choreography, set design, lighting, music and acting — was orchestrated and executed with the glimmering polish of professionalism one typically expects from, well, professional theatre companies.

One of my boys performed in the ensemble cast, so I witnessed first hand the painstaking hours of rehearsal and preparation these students undertook since last September to pull this show together — and clearly, it all paid off in spades.

Hats off to director Tara Koett, music director Jennifer Mann, vocal coach Andrew Snyder and choreographer Alissa Kleinloog, together with their families, for the many months of hard work, long hours, and inevitable stress associated with such a daunting undertaking.

And no mention of this fabulous show would be complete without acknowledging the talented ensemble of student musicians who sat in the dark orchestra pit brightly performing complicated music for nearly three hours while the rest of us laughed and delighted ourselves with the spectacle on stage.

Deserving particular acknowledgement was the fact that the production’s female lead fell ill with a throat infection for Thursday evening’s performance, leaving her understudy to fill in with just a few hours’ notice!

Quel director’s nightmare.

But not for this group of well-prepared thespians. Emily Pasiuk stepped out onto the stage that evening as Rosemary Pilkington, wowing the audience with her confident, stellar performance and forever earning herself a grateful piece of her director’s relieved heart!

Hats off as well to all six understudies in the production, who not only had to memorize their own dialogue, songs and dances, but had also to learn their respective lead roles, “just in case.”

There’s much to be gained from the massive undertaking that is live theatre, and by all visible accounts, much was gained by everyone involved — audience and performers alike.

It’s every parent’s great privilege to watch their own and other children diligently seek to develop their gifts and talents, and to give back in some measure to this world in need.

For life is fleeting, and every child precious.

Like whispers in the breeze are the moments that mark our souls and mould our hearts, and while we can, we ought to celebrate the moments that move us, change us, and help us to love and accept each other without reserve.

Arts and culture (like sport, and like every other worthwhile human endeavour) often gift us with tender, beautiful moments to treasure and remember.

I for one will treasure my memories of the sensational performance these high school students proffered. Bravo Thurber H2S family!

Vesna Higham is a local lawyer, former Red Deer city councillor and a freelance columnist.

Just Posted

Pumpjacks draw oil out of the ground near Olds, Alta., Thursday, July 16, 2020. A new report suggests the economic impact of the pandemic led to a massive increase in federal aid to Canada's oil patch. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Alberta economy ‘still reeling,’ says ATB Financial

Alberta’s economy is still feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and… Continue reading

Ella Stoner, five, is ready to cut off her hair and donate it to A Child’s Voice Foundation. (Photo by Lauren Stoner Photography)
Central Alberta girl to donate her ‘princess hair’ to A Child’s Voice Foundation

A five-year-old girl from Rimbey has never had a haircut before. Now,… Continue reading

Asymptomatic testing will now be available for "priority groups" who are most likely to spread the COVID-19 virus to vulnerable or at-risk populations. File photo by THE CANADIAN PRESS
Alberta adds 1,195 new COVID-19 cases Saturday

Red Deer has dropped to 760 active cases

Lacombe-Ponoka MLA Ron Orr
Central Alberta MLAs comment on UCP members kicked out of caucus

A pair of central Alberta MLAs have commented on the two United… Continue reading

Contributed photo
Johanna Hannaford: Central Alberta designer offers inclusive clothing

By Stephanie Rhodes Local designer Johanna Hannaford’s inclusive clothing creations are smashing… Continue reading

Vancouver Canucks' Zack MacEwen (71), Travis Boyd (72) and Jimmy Vesey (24) celebrate a goal against the Edmonton Oilers during third period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 15, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Big third period lifts Vancouver Canucks to 4-1 victory over Edmonton Oilers

Canucks 4 Oilers 1 EDMONTON — Matthew Highmore scored twice in the… Continue reading

A vial of the Medicago vaccine sits on a surface. CARe Clinic, located in Red Deer, has been selected to participate in the third phase of vaccine study. (Photo courtesy www.medicago.com)
Canada’s vaccine rollout operation won’t miss a beat with new military leader: expert

DARTMOUTH — The sudden departure of the senior military officer in charge… Continue reading

Quebec Premier Francois Legault speaks during a news conference on the COVID-19 pandemic, Tuesday, September 29, 2020 at the legislature in Quebec City. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jacques Boissinot
Quebec premier argues province has power to amend constitution in letter to Trudeau

MONTREAL — Quebec Premier François Legault has written a letter to Prime… Continue reading

A demonstrator stands in front of riot police officers during a banned protest in support of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, in Paris, Saturday, May, 15, 2021. Marches in support of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip were being held Saturday in a dozen French cities, but the focus was on Paris where riot police countered organizers who said they would defy a ban on the protest, ordered on the grounds that it risked turning violent. (AP Photo/Rafael Yaghobzadeh)
Police fire tear gas on banned Palestinian march in Paris

PARIS (AP) — French riot police fired tear gas and used water… Continue reading

Photo by The Associated Press
NYC Pride parade bans police; Gay officers ‘disheartened’

NEW YORK (AP) — Organizers of New York City’s Pride events said… Continue reading

Welcoming cowboy boots at the historic and colourful Last Chance Saloon in the ghost town of Wayne near Drumheller, Alta., on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019. The bar and hotel are up for sale. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘It was a going concern’: Remaining bar and hotel in Alberta coal ghost town for sale

WAYNE, Alta. — Built during the First World War, it survived the… Continue reading

A letter from a bottle that washed up in New Brunswick in 2017 is shown in an undated handout photo. A team of researchers from Université du Québec à Rimouski are trying to solve the mystery of whether a letter in a bottle that washed up in New Brunswick in 2017 was indeed from a young victim of Titanic shipwreck or simply a hoax. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO, N. Beaudry, UQAR *MANDATORY CREDIT*
Real or hoax? Quebec scholars probe mystery letter allegedly from Titanic passenger

MONTREAL — Researchers from Université du Québec à Rimouski are trying to… Continue reading

Minister of Transport Marc Garneau takes part in a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, Nov. 26, 2019. Advocates, experts and opposition MPs say correspondence showing close communication between the federal Transport Department and the Canadian Transportation Agency regarding passenger refunds throws into question the independence of the CTA, an arm’s-length body. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Emails reveal close communication between government, transport regulator on refunds

OTTAWA — Advocates, experts and opposition MPs say correspondence showing close communication… Continue reading

Most Read