By Jennifer Von Ohlen
DASSEL, COKATO, MN After weeks of memorizing lines and choreography, redoing scenes over and over, and hitting all the musical score notes, Dassel-Cokato High School’s performing arts students are adding the final touches to this year’s fall musical production, “Once Upon a Mattress.”
The musical will run for two weekends in the DC Performing Arts Center (PAC), with shows Friday, Nov. 9, Saturday, Nov. 10, and Friday Nov. 17 at 7 p.m.; and a 2 p.m. show Sunday, Nov. 18.
If the DC Chargers football team wins its game against Waseca tonight, Friday, Nov. 2, the Friday, Nov. 9 performance will be moved to Sunday, Nov. 11 at 2 p.m.
Tickets are available in the high school activities office and at the PAC prior to performances. Student tickets (12th grade and under) are $4 each, and adult tickets are $6 each.
Only cash and checks will be processed. Credit card payments are no longer available.
The show written by Jay Thompson, Dean Fuller, and Marshall Barer, with music composed by Mary Rogers and lyrics by Barer is based on “The Princess and the Pea,” and is described by director James Frickstad as being “a classic, and a twist on your everyday fairytale.”
In an unhappy kingdom, the king has become unable to speak because of a witch’s curse, and his queen has assumed power.
Queen Aggravain has decreed that until her son, Prince Dauntless has married a princess of royal blood, no one in the kingdom shall be permitted to wed.
So far, 11 applicants have failed the tests arranged by the queen, which are said to be nearly impossible to complete.
Frickstad selected this show based on its numerous leading roles, its large ensemble, and its storyline.
The show comes with its own set of challenges, too, as the written scene changes are said to be rather simple. So, creativity is needed in order to keep the happenings captivating.
“I believe we are doing some things that have not been done before,” Frickstad commented. “Hopefully, the audience will enjoy them.”
He added, “I hope the audience comes away impressed with all the work the students have done, connecting with one or more of the multiple storylines, and perhaps leaving with a song or two stuck in their head.”
Frickstad also said that he has been quite impressed with the work of the first-time drama students.
“We have many bright and talented young actors and actresses that are on their way to do great things,” he stated.
In addition to the students’ hard work, Frickstad is also grateful for the others who have been involved with making the show come to life.
“An incredible amount of work has gone into this production,” stated Frickstad. “Stage manager Will Cronk and production assistant Rachel Olson have their hands full. Aside from them, Ron and Becky Hungerford (set), David Malenke (tech), Deb Moen (costumes), and Brian Veith (pit orchestra), among many, many others, have been working tirelessly to create something magical. I cannot thank them enough.”