Youth performers of the North End Music & Performing Arts Center’s (NEMPAC) Music Theatre Troupe performed Getting to Know…The Sound of Music at the Improv Asylum on May 17th and 19th. Both shows had a sold-out full house of 150 attendees!
This spring production of The Sound of Music, stage directed by Allie Meek, music directed by Alexandra Dietrich, choreographed by Amanda Teneriello and sccompanied by Patricia Au, is a 70-minute adaptation based on the original stage musical from 1959. It was designed to engage students with the work of Rodgers and Hammerstein, specially adapted for young people to perform, and a truly fun musical for the whole family to enjoy!
Running parallel to the Boch Center’s professional production of The Sound of Music, the NEMPAC production was a children’s version adapted by Tom Briggs and Timothy Allen McDonald. For the past 15 weeks, the NEMPAC Music Theatre Troupe program directors have been leading the cast as they worked incredibly hard, training in voice, dance, and acting, as well as developing their collaborative skills to work together as an ensemble, enhance their performance skills, and express their creativity. And they sure delivered!
The audience, filled with families and friends of NEMPAC and the North End and surrounding communities, gathered to travel in time and join Maria’s journey to the Von Trapp household and get carried away with the engaging story, amazing scenes, and beautiful music of “My Favorite Things”, “Edelweiss”, “Climb Ev’ry Mountain”, “Do-Re-Mi”, and the title song “The Sound of Music”. The audience, both children and adults, were all tapping their feet and singing along.
This production brought together an incredible amount of talent and perseverance from the staff, cast, and many volunteers who made this event a joyful success.
“I want to express a special thanks to Ms. Allie Meek, stage and program director of the Music Theatre Troupe program, who has been working at NEMPAC now for over five years as both the Music Theatre Troupe Program director as well as the Summer Workshop director, inspiring our youth with her invaluable talent,” said Sherri Snow, Executive Director at NEMPAC.
Ms. Meek received her Master’s Degree from Emerson College in Theatre Education and Applied Theatre. In addition to directing at NEMPAC, Allie is a teaching artist at the Watertown Children’s Theatre and the Huntington Theatre Company. She is also a theatre arts teacher at Amigos School in Cambridge.
“Another big thanks goes to Ms. Alexandra Dietrich, who has been musically directing the Music Theatre Troupe program since its founding in 2012, and has been an incredible leading figure for our theatre youth,” added Snow.
Ms. Dietrich also leads the choral and general music program as a NEMPAC teaching artist at the St. John School. Very active in the New England performance scene as a mezzo-soprano artist, Ms. Dietrich most recently stage directed a professional production of “Cendrillon” with the Cambridge Chamber Ensemble.
This production of Getting to Know….Sound of Music was made possible thanks to the support from the Improv Asylum, the ABCD Center rehearsal facility space at 9 Hull Street, and the many parent volunteers.