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Arts & Entertainment

REVIEW: Well-produced “Footloose” draws crowds, but lacks in message

Saturday, April 5, 2014 by Skyler Stanford

The cast of "Footloose" sings one of the opening numbers during a rehearsal. Eli Fisher / The Lightning Rod

The cast of “Footloose” sings one of the opening numbers during a rehearsal. Eli Fisher / The Lightning Rod

“The show went well, there were good dancers, and good singers, which was surprising because you wouldn’t think that the kids would be that good.” Most would agree with Christa Caimano that the S.S.H.S. Drama Club’s production of “Footloose” went beyond expectations.

​From the costumes, props, sets, and well casted and rehearsed actors there was no wonder why “Footloose” was sold out two days in a row, not to mention the very well-choreographed dances that made every scene more enjoyable. The actors were the main reason why this show was such a success.

“Bob (Berenis, the director of the musical) showed us many ways to get into character,” said Izzi Cavotta ’17 who played the main character Ariel Moore. “I was really nervous about being the lead in this play, I’ve never done anything this huge.”

​This play was indeed huge. According to Isabelle Franco ’16, a dancer in the play, “the atmosphere backstage was crazy! It sold out two nights in a row and there was so many positive comments.” I don’t know how the actors faced the pressure of preforming live in front of the full over-1000 seat auditorium including their friends and family. I imagine that it took a lot of courage and the help of friends and fellow cast members to help get them through.

Though I thought everyone did an amazing job, the choice of the play was less than stellar. I could not relate to any of the “Footloose” characters, especially the boy-crazy, stereotypical female teenagers. For example, the main character Ariel, who is portrayed to be smart, let her ex-boyfriend abuse her and get away with it. Even all of the moms were treated badly by their husbands in some way. Then there are girls running around looking for a “hero” (or boyfriend) like it’s the only thing that matters. It seems like the writer of Footloose (Dean Pitchford) didn’t believe that women should have enough self-respect to stand up to a man when they’re being abused mentally and physically. It just doesn’t send a productive message to teenagers other than a rather trivial one—to dance for what you believe in.

As far as the production goes, I agree completely with Molly Nunn ’17 who said, “It was fantastic, they performed very well, and showed all of their hard work.”

Skyler Stanford is a freshman who covers news and S.S.H.S. events for The Lightning Rod.


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