Jesse Rines – Mustangs Ahead

(LAKEWOOD RANCH, FL)- Over the weekend, the Mustang Players put on their annual winter show. A cabaret performance, “A Broadway State of Mind” featured performances from both classic and modern blockbuster musicals.

The play opened with a performance of “Another Op’nin, Another Show” from the Broadway favorite “Kiss Me Kate.” Featuring a solo by senior Caroline Culbreath and an ensemble dance routine, the song set the stage for the rest of the musical.

The opening number founded the high-energy atmosphere supported in the first act. Other notable performances included the duet of “Anything You Can Do” from the classic “Annie, Get Your Gun” by Culbreath and John Todd Girman, a wonderful performance of “Sixteen Going on Seventeen” from “The Sound of Music” by sophomores Alex Kraus and Gabby Macocay, and a heartwarming performance of “Friendship” from “Anything Goes” by juniors Spencer Waid, Alexandria Rogalski, and Ty Dearing.

While the soloists were talented, the ensemble performances of act one is when the performers shined. Featuring strong dance numbers and expressive manipulation of voice, “Coffee in a Cardboard Cup” released the hidden caffeine-infused jitters of the cast as well as the audience.

While act one featured more of the classics, act two was built around a more modern style of Broadway performance. LRHS senior Olivia LaFemina carried the act, with show-stopping performances of “One Perfect Moment” (Bring It On!), “Strongest Suit” (Aida), and a feature in the performance of “You Could Drive a Person Crazy” (Company) alongside Culbreath and sophomore Cayla Hill.

The only thing more impressive than the musical itself was how little time the Mustang Players had to prepare. According to TADA! Youth Theater Residency Director Katy Knowles, the students spent only a month preparing their pieces. This includes those acting and those behind the scenes, including juniors Rachael Davis and Marissa Boback running lights and sound, respectively.

Altogether, “A BROADWAY STATE OF MIND” was a stunning performance. Friday night’s full house was impressed by the talent levels of the Mustang Players, with the audience left only to anticipate the next performance.

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