Update: Students preparing to shine in Throckmorton production

Chloe Wintersteen

Redwood thespians are currently in tech rehearsals, refining their singing, acting, and dancing skills for a production of Footloose set to open at the Throckmorton Theatre this Friday.

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Footloose is being produced by the Throckmorton Youth Performers (TYP). Redwood students Adia Folsom, Sofia Rivas-Micoud, Zach Morris, Eliza Peppel, and Catherine Gotz are all involved in the production.

Sophomore Sofia Rivas-Micoud, a transfer student from Spain who was cast in the ensemble, is enjoying the rehearsal process. “They’re all really nice and they all help me out. I really like singing and I think I’m improving my singing because I am involved in Footloose,” Rivas-Micoud said.

However, students aren’t limited to only performing onstage. Throckmorton offers positions to students in sets, costumes, hair/makeup, orchestra, and in the production team itself. Some students volunteer to fill management roles as well.

Freshman Catherine Gotz is currently the assistant stage manager for Footloose, though she has performed in past Throckmorton productions like The Wizard of Oz, where she was cast as the Wizard.

“I’ve learned so much about acting, about being crew, about just making a show possible. Even though the theater program at Redwood is great, underclassmen don’t get as much of a feel for the whole production,” Gotz said. “Going to Throckmorton, you really get a feel for the sets, props, costumes, and just everything that goes into being in or working on a show.”

Tommy Searle of Tamalpias High School High appreciates TYP because it gives him opportunities to pursue his passion, acting. “I really like the way that you can step in someone else’s shoes and personify how you think that they would be. There’s an imaginative side to it where you can explore a bunch of different ways of showing your character, and that really pushed me toward acting,” Searle said.

For some,  like Audrey Lamerand of Tam Valley Elementary, the Throckmorton is their first introduction to musical theater.

“The best part of the shows is that you get to meet a lot of new people. It’s a really fun experience! It’s singing lessons, acting lessons, and social lessons all in one,” Lamerand said.

Footloose is a work of musical theater based on the 1984 original film. It is about a teenage boy, Ren, who is incredibly passionate about dancing. He rebels against the adults in his small town for the right to dance.

Gotz believes that Footloose is a great show for young people to perform because it is thematically focused on branching out and staying true to oneself, issues that many teens struggle with today.

The production is under the direction of the youth program director Steven Hess, with choreography by Donna Cerio and musical direction by Robert Rutt.

Rutt is primarily responsible for teaching music to the entire cast and putting the band together. “Everyone wants to perform, but the hard part is pounding the notes and getting everything correct. But that really really pays off when the show comes out really good,” Rutt said.

It is currently the building’s 100th anniversary, and scenic designer Steve Coleman has been a part of the Throckmorton since its re-opening 10 years ago. He played a big role in the building’s restoration by intricately painting the entire inside of the theater.

“I could start six months before and the set still wouldn’t be done because detail takes a lot of time. It’s all in the details because thats what makes it sparkle, different, and special,” said Coleman, who builds and paints the sets for the TYP productions.

The program was originally founded  in 2008 by Adam Saville under the name of Marin Youth Performers. The first production was Willy Wonka.

Footloose will be playing at the Throckmorton Theatre March 7 and 14 at 7:30 p.m. and March 8, 9, 15, 16 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased online at www.throckmortontheatre.org or by calling the box office at 415.383.9600.