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Shrek the Musical opens July 19

Production of Shrek the Musical makes its Central Valley premiere in Visalia

Shrek the Musical

Shrek the Musical The Tulare County Office of Education Theatre Company is preparing to produce possibly the first amateur version of Shrek the Musical in Central California. Theatre Company director Brian Roberts was able to obtain the rights to the popular Broadway musical when it became available earlier this year.

Shrek the Musical, which is based on the Oscar-winning movie of the same title, is a fairytale turned upside down. Instead of a handsome prince, Shrek the ogre is the unlikely hero who attempts to rescue an imprisoned princess, Fiona. Shrek will be played by Redwood High School's Jack O'Leary. In the musical, Princess Fiona, who is imprisoned in a castle for most of her life, grows from childhood to adulthood. As she grows, Fiona will be played by three actresses - Abby Cantrell, Mikayla Hays and Carli Caviglia. Redwood High School's Ricky Reyes plays Shrek's chatty sidekick, Donkey. The show features over a dozen musical numbers and plenty of adventures and comedy. One of the highlights of the show is a large, flying dragon, which guards the castle where Fiona is imprisoned.

Shrek the Musical "Shrek is a tremendous challenge for any actor as they not only have to portray larger-than-life fantasy characters, but deliver demanding performances while wearing outrageous costumes and intricate makeup," says Mr. Roberts. "Our performers are up to the challenge and are thrilled to be working on such fun and fresh material. The Central Valley's premiere of Shrek promises to be two hours of high energy entertainment with lots of humor wrapped in captivating music."

The Theatre Company will perform Shrek the Musical seven times in July at the L.J. Williams Theater in Visalia. Evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m. on July 19, 20, 25, 26 and 27. Matinee performances begin at 2:00 p.m. on July 20 and 27. Tickets will be available July 5 at both TCOE Visalia offices: 2637 West Burrel Avenue and 7000 Doe Avenue, Suite A. General admission tickets are $12 per person. Reserved VIP seating is $20 per person. Any remaining tickets will be available at the theater's box office 30 minutes before each performance. For more information, call the Theatre Company at (559) 651-1482.

Key Roles
Shrek - Jack O'Leary, Redwood High School (Visalia)
Young Fiona - Abby Cantrell, Royal Oaks Elementary School (Visalia)
Teen Fiona - Mikayla Hays, Redwood High School (Visalia)
Fiona - Carli Caviglia, Golden West High School (Visalia)
Voice of the Dragon - Casandra Castaneda, Redwood High School (Visalia)
Donkey - Ricky Reyes, Redwood High School (Visalia)

Shrek the Musical

Photos above (from top):
~ Adrienne Terry (foreground) leads the 55-member cast through the show's finale. Ms. Terry, who is assisting Theatre Company choreographer Nicole Zweifel with the production's dance sequences, performed with the Theatre Company when she was in high school.
~ Jeff White (left) and Theatre Company director Brian Roberts work quickly to make a mold of actor Jack O'Leary's head for the mask he will wear as the character Shrek.
~ Ricky Reyes (foreground), who plays Donkey, rehearses with a prototype of the giant mechanical dragon. Carrying the dragon are Parker Lewis, Jared Gayer, Javier Camacho and Sabin Adams.