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Mount Greylock Presents 'Once Upon a Mattress'
09:53AM / Friday, March 09, 2018
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Sophomore Ashtyn Faas as Queen Aggravain lectures her son, Prince Dauntless the Drab (ninth grader Finn Ellingwood) on the finer points of finding a suitable princess in a scene from Mount Greylock's upcoming production of 'Once Upon a Mattress.'

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. — Mount Greylock Regional School District will present its annual musical theater production on Friday and Saturday, March 9 and 10, at 7 p.m. at the ’62 Centre for Theatre and Dance at Williams College.

This year's presentation is "Once Upon a Mattress" by Jay Thompson, Dean Fuller, and Marshall Barer with music by Mary Rodgers and lyrics by Marshall Barer. Based on the Hans Christian Anderson story of "The Princess and The Pea," "Once Upon a Mattress" takes place in a fictitious 15th century European kingdom. In this hilarious tweaking of the fairy tale, Queen Aggravain (MGRHS sophomore Ashtyn Faas) has ruled that none may marry until her son, Prince Dauntless the Drab (freshman Finn Ellingwood), marries. However, she has managed to sabotage every princess that comes along. When Sir Harry and Lady Larken (seniors Jacob Hane and Cedar Keyes) learn that they are going to be parents, wed or not, he goes off to the swamps and brings back Princess Winnifred (ninth-grader Ruth Weaver) or "Fred" to her friends. The queen is horrified and immediately begins to scheme with the help of her trusty Wizard (junior Morgan Nottke), but Winnifred - with some help from Sir Harry, the mute King (senior Sabrina Templeton), the Minstrel (freshman Victoria Melkonyan) and the Jester (seventh-grader Sam Tucker-Smith) - isn't going to be quite so easy to get rid of.  

Beginning its Broadway run in May of 1959, "Once Upon a Mattress" marked the Broadway debut of later TV personality Carol Burnett, who originated the role of Princess Winnifred. The musical received a Tony Award nomination for Best Musical as well as a Best Leading Actress nomination for Burnett. It has been adapted and produced for television three times since. With a score that is at once whimsical and rollicking, with a healthy helping of tongue in cheek, "Once Upon a Mattress" features songs that have become musical theater favorites such as "Shy," "In a Little While," "Normandy" and "I Want to Live Happily Ever After."

This production involves more than 40 members of the Mount Greylock student body as actors, singers, pit musicians and crew members, and is directed for the 19th season by faculty member Jeffrey Welch, assisted by program alumna Amanda Bell Goldmakher with vocal direction by Jean Kirsch, choreography by Ann Marie Rodriguez. The pit orchestra, which is made up mostly of student musicians, is directed by Lyndon Moors.
Tickets are $6 for students and seniors and $8 for adults, and they are available at the door on the nights of the performances.


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