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Albert Lea High School Newspaper

THE AHLAHASA

Albert Lea High School Newspaper

THE AHLAHASA

Albert Lea High School Newspaper

THE AHLAHASA

Young Cast Presents Wizard of Oz

Dawson, who played Dorothy, has been in ALHS past musicals including “Beauty and the Beast” and “Mamma Mia!” She decided to try out for this year’s production as she enjoys the message of the story.
Junior+Evie+Dawson+takes+her+first+bow+as+Dorothy+Hale+after+starring+in+Albert+Lea+High+School%E2%80%99s+production+of+the+%E2%80%9CWizard+of+Oz%E2%80%9D.+The+fall+musical+was+Nov.+30%2C+Dec.+1+and+Dec.+3+in+the+auditorium.+Photo+by+Rosa+Corey-Gruenes
Rosa Corey-Gruenes
Junior Evie Dawson takes her first bow as Dorothy Hale after starring in Albert Lea High School’s production of the “Wizard of Oz”. The fall musical was Nov. 30, Dec. 1 and Dec. 3 in the auditorium. Photo by Rosa Corey-Gruenes

This year the fall musical, presented by Albert Lea High School, was the “Wizard of Oz” directed by Tess Douty-Amick, choreographed by Mary Schoppers, musically directed by Erik Zinter and set designed by Ken Fiscus. The show started with a dress rehearsal on Wednesday afternoon for the Fourth-grade elementary students. Opening night was Thursday, November 30 at 7 p.m. There was a show Friday at 7 p.m. and a 2 o’clock Sunday matinee. Dorothy was played by Evie Dawson (11). Connor Hanson (9) was Scarecrow. Mayzie Paulson (10) was Tinman and Adele Helleksen (9) was Lion. 

Dawson, who played Dorothy, has been in ALHS past musicals including “Beauty and the Beast” and “Mamma Mia!” She decided to try out for this year’s production as she enjoys the message of the story. Dawson specifically tried out for Dorothy because the character is curious and wants to explore new places. She felt she had a connection to her character in this way. 

A challenge Dawson faced while being Dorothy, was expressing during an emotional scene. Dawson isn’t used to crying or showing so much emotion in public. Apart from these challenges, Dawson’s favorite moment so far in participating in this year’s production was when all of the pieces were put together. 

“We have a lot of fun,” said Dawson. “Like set changes and getting to work together as a group and figuring it out… It has been so much fun.”

Hanson, who portrayed Scarecrow, agrees with Dawson about the cast.

“The cast has been terrific,” said Hanson. “ I hope to work with these people again.” 

Hanson has been in other musical productions including last year’s “Beauty and the Beast”. Hanson’s favorite part of getting to portray Scarecrow is when he gets to act out all the silliness of his character. 

“I can really appreciate the goofy aspects of it,” said Hanson. “The whole dazed and confused part of the character kind of feels like that is how I live my way through life.” 

Paulson, who was Tinman, had auditioned for the musical not knowing that she would get one of the biggest roles. 

“I just wanted to be part of the musical,” said Paulson. “I didn’t expect to get a big role like that.” 

Paulson had also been in last year’s production of “Beauty and the Beast” in the ensemble. Paulson hopes to participate in future musicals. A roadblock she faced was singing her solo as Tinman, as she doesn’t feel confident in her voice during rehearsals.

“But when I actually get out there and sing, I feel a lot better and confident,” said Paulson.

Helleksen, who was this year’s Lion, had also been in “Beauty and the Beast” and has participated in community productions for The ACT Theater at the Marion Ross. Helleksen enjoyed Lion because he makes people laugh at his antics. 

“I get to fall asleep and I snore very loudly and it always gets everyone laughing,” said Helleksen of her favorite Lion moment. She also feels a connection to her character because she thinks she doesn’t have the courage to do things, just like Lion. Like taking on a lead role.

“I felt it was weird because I am only in ninth grade and it was a big role,” said Helleksen but after getting into character, she felt she had the courage to continue one of her biggest roles she’s had yet. 

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