Students gearing up for ‘Chicago’


By Glenn Battishill - gbattishill@aimmediamidwest.com



Roxie Hart, played by senior Hailey Wright, is questioned by her attorney, Billy Flynn, played by senior Alessandro Nocera, during her trial at the end of the show.

Roxie Hart, played by senior Hailey Wright, is questioned by her attorney, Billy Flynn, played by senior Alessandro Nocera, during her trial at the end of the show.


Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

Members of the jury gasp as protagonist, Roxie Hart, details how she killed a man in self-defense during the trial scene at the conclusion of “Chicago.”


Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

Velma Kelly, played here by Alexia Dicke (center in blue and white stripes), leads the cast of “Chicago” in the musical number “All That Jazz” at the start of the show. The show is an adaptation of the broadway musical but has been toned down to be appropriate for high school theater-going audiences.


Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

Tickets are now on sale for Hayes High School’s spring musical, which features dance numbers, intrigue, murder, and all that jazz.

March 19-21, dozens of students at Hayes will put on a production of the high school version of the broadway musical “Chicago.” Director Dara Gillis said the school’s show will follow the same structure and story of the broadway production and film, but it is toned down to be appropriate for high school students.

Students have been rehearsing the show since the cast list was posted in January, and senior Alessandro Nocera, who plays sleazy attorney Billy Flynn, said the show is coming together.

“I’m really enjoying when we are all on set. It brings the show to life,” Nocera said. “It helps give you a feel for the show.”

Nocera’s character spends much of the show trying to get accused murderer Roxy Hart, played by senior Hailey Wright, acquitted of the crime by lying to the judge and presenting a fake version of the case. Nocera said he’s enjoying playing a character with a crooked sense of morals.

“It’s a lot of fun to pretend you don’t care,” Nocera said. “You get to just let loose.”

Wright said she can’t believe how quickly rehearsals are going by.

“It’s sad, almost,” she said. “We have four more weeks. It’s surreal. (The characters) are so terrible but it’s a fantastic show and it will be wonderful.”

Wright said she’s enjoying every moment of her last show at Hayes.

“It really puts everything in perspective,” Wright said, adding the show is the most physically demanding show she’s done. “I’m really enjoying pushing myself. (Being a lead in the musical) is new for me, and I’m learning something new every day.”

Wright said she has auditioned for several theater programs at schools and universities throughout the country, and she is thankful for the program at Hayes.

Senior Alexia Dicke plays the role of Velma Kelly, who Hart meets in jail. Dicke said even though she is an experienced performer, the show is very challenging.

“Being a lead is very difficult since it’s only my second show,” Dicke said. “My character is crude and selfish, someone that is completely opposite from my personality. That’s been the hardest part, trying to fit the role of some one I wouldn’t normally act like.

“I’m looking forward to everything. It’s a really great cast, and I’ve gotten close to all the cast members,” she added. “I’m excited for the audience to be wowed with how good it’s going to be. It’ll be really clean and really precise, and I think they’ll be impressed.”

Jake Stein, a sophomore, plays a small but pivotal role in the show, as he is shot and killed by Wright’s character minutes into the production.

“It’s been a challenge figuring out all my stunts before we figured out how big the set was going to be,” Stein said. “It’s been really fun. This is my first show where I’ve gotten to plan how I die.”

Kylie Booth, a senior, plays the matron of the jail and said doing a mature show after two magical shows has been fun.

“It’s really fun to learn a different style of dance, because this is way different than all the shows I’ve done in the past,” Booth said, adding she’s enjoying the show, which will be her last at Hayes.

“I really love the cast, and I think I’m really blessed to be in this cast as a senior,” she said. “It’s a really fun show, and I’m glad to have such a great cast to go along with it. I’m looking forward to the community being surprised with how we portray this show.”

There will be four performances of the show: 7:30 p.m. March 19, March 20 and March 21, with a matinee on March 21 at 2 p.m. Tickets are available at www.delawarecityschools.seatyourself.biz.

Roxie Hart, played by senior Hailey Wright, is questioned by her attorney, Billy Flynn, played by senior Alessandro Nocera, during her trial at the end of the show.
https://www.delgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/02/web1_DSC_0477.jpgRoxie Hart, played by senior Hailey Wright, is questioned by her attorney, Billy Flynn, played by senior Alessandro Nocera, during her trial at the end of the show. Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

Members of the jury gasp as protagonist, Roxie Hart, details how she killed a man in self-defense during the trial scene at the conclusion of “Chicago.”
https://www.delgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/02/web1_DSC_0483.jpgMembers of the jury gasp as protagonist, Roxie Hart, details how she killed a man in self-defense during the trial scene at the conclusion of “Chicago.” Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

Velma Kelly, played here by Alexia Dicke (center in blue and white stripes), leads the cast of “Chicago” in the musical number “All That Jazz” at the start of the show. The show is an adaptation of the broadway musical but has been toned down to be appropriate for high school theater-going audiences.
https://www.delgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/40/2020/02/web1_DSC_0487.jpgVelma Kelly, played here by Alexia Dicke (center in blue and white stripes), leads the cast of “Chicago” in the musical number “All That Jazz” at the start of the show. The show is an adaptation of the broadway musical but has been toned down to be appropriate for high school theater-going audiences. Glenn Battishill | The Gazette

By Glenn Battishill

gbattishill@aimmediamidwest.com

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.

Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.