Mt. Vernon Register-News

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March 4, 2014

MVTHS gears up for 'South Pacific'

MT. VERNON — Mt. Vernon Township High School senior Faith Harpole said playing the lead role in this year's MVTHS Operetta show, “South Pacific,” brings with it a mix of emotions.

On the one hand, she said it's great to play such a rich, complex role as Nellie Forbush. But on the other hand, this will be her last operetta performance at MVTHS, which makes the occasion sad.

“It's sad but it's also very exciting because it's one of the bigger parts that I've had, so I'm just excited to be able to portray my part,” Harpole said.

With opening night just around the corner, the cast and crew of this year's show gathered at the MVTHS auditorium Feb. 28 for rehearsals. The rehearsals continue during the early part of this week.

The 72nd Annual MVTHS Operetta will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the auditorium. Tickets are $5 each with some reserved seating available.

“South Pacific” is an epic musical romance set during World War II that centers around a group of American sailors and Navy nurses.

It was composed by Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II, who based the story on James A. Michener's 1947 book, “Tales of the South Pacific.”

The main thrust of the story concerns two “unconventional love affairs” that develop among the characters.

“Nellie Forbush befriends and quickly falls for Emile de Becque, a French expatriate and plantation owner,” states an MVTHS synopsis. “And Lt. Joe Cable finds himself in a passionate affair with Liat, the young daughter of Bloody Mary, the local grass-skirt peddler.”

Mary Beth Mezo, the show's director, said it's the music that really makes “South Pacific” memorable.

“It is a classic for a reason,” Mezo said. “The lyrics are clever, the music is singable. It's the kind of music that when you walk out of here, you'll be humming it.”

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