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September 22, 2014

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Gorman thespians get help from pros

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Nicky Fuchs/Special to the Home News

Director Elena Ferrante-Martin, warms up the cast at Bishop Gorman High School for their production of “Anything Goes.” Several local professionals have come in to help with everything from stage direction, lights, choreography, to hair and makeup.The professionals are not only helping, but teaching the students as well. The production will begin running March 5.

Anything Goes

Courtney Davis, a  Bishop Gorman High School senior performs a dance number in the beginning of the play Launch slideshow »

'Anything Goes'

'Anything Goes'

Who: Bishop Gorman High School's drama department

When: 7 p.m. March 5-7 and 12-14 and at 2 p.m. March 8 and 15

Where: Bishop Gorman theater, 5959 Hualapai Way

Cost: $15 and $12

Info: www.bishopgorman.org

Bishop Gorman High School drama students took the stage, feet moving and hands waving in the air while senior Angelia Formisano belted out "Blow, Gabriel, Blow" from atop the set's work in progress, the interior of a cruise ship nightclub.

Helping them get the choreography and music just right for this spring's production of "Anything Goes" was accredited choreographer Tammy Pessagano.

Pessagano is one of four professionals from different sectors of the local entertainment industry who have been lending their expertise to the members of the cast as they prepare for show time.

The production, a musical set on an ocean liner in the 1930s, will take place in the school's theater March 5-8 and 12-15.

In the meantime, in addition to Pessagano, the students have been working with BJ Allen, the production and stage manager of "Jersey Boys," Michael Martin of the "Donny & Marie Show," and David-Paul Shapiro, studio artist at Madame Toussauds celebrity wax museum.

Producer and Director Elena Ferrante-Martin said she called on friends and colleagues to help mentor the students during this production and give them an idea of how things work in the professional world.

"We're taking another step toward a more slick production," she said.

Senior Courtney Davis, who is one of the play's characters as well as a dance captain, said the mentorship has been great preparation for those who want to pursue acting after high school and she has also learned a lot of life lessons.

"We're so blessed to have all these people here with us," she said.

Allen said one of the lessons he hopes to impart to those students interested in costume design is to have patience.

"Sometimes you're going to run into actors who are absolutely wonderful and then some that want the world who may be difficult," he said.

Ashley Livingston can be reached at 990-8925 or [email protected].

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