Photo by Matt Stensland
Hayden Valley Elementary School dwarfs, from left, Mookie Ferguson, Isaiah Lee (who is home-schooled), Micah Lanier, Tyler Hockaday and Trenten Mitchell perform with eighth-grader Morgan Carrico, who played Snow White, on Thursday during a matinee performance of "The Tale of Snow White."
If you go
What: "The Tale of Snow White," presented by Class Act Productions, a Hayden community theater group
When: 7 p.m. today and 5 p.m. Saturday
Where: Hayden High School auditorium
Cost: $5 for adults, $3 for children as old as age 12, free for seniors and children ages 6 and younger
Steamboat Springs With months of line-learning, set-building and costume-making behind them, the 37 students and numerous volunteers involved in a Hayden production of "The Tale of Snow White" had one thing left to hear before their first performance Thursday.
"This is the main thing: Have a good time," director Kathy Deepe told the cast and crew before they took the Hayden High School auditorium stage. "If you mess up a line, they're not going to know it. : This is the fun part. This is where you get to show your talents."
"The Tale of Snow White" is a lighthearted update of the classic fairytale, complete with five - not seven - dwarves, a chorus of limerick-reciting ladies in waiting and four versions of the evil queen. It's put on by Class Act Productions, a nonprofit community theater group run by Deepe that's open to students in third through 12th grades, with sets and costumes made by students and community volunteers. Performances are at 7 p.m. today and 5 p.m. Saturday at Hayden High School.
Deepe, who teaches second- and third-grade classes at Hayden Valley Elementary School, had been putting on plays in her classroom for years before she started Class Act Productions in 2004. She said the productions give students a creative outlet and offer self-confidence to children as they learn to get into character.
"It's fun to see how the kids can be so creative. The dwarves, they really rose to the occasion," Deepe said, adding that all the children gave outstanding performances in Thursday's matinee show for elementary and middle school students. "They were probably the boys who struggled the most during practice, but when they were on stage, they really did a great job."
The "Snow White" cast also includes several cameos from Hayden School District employees, including spots by middle school Principal Gina Zabel and district Superintendent Greg Rockhold. Zabel, who plays the "old hag" incarnation of the evil queen who strives to kill Snow White, drew loud cheers from Thursday's crowd.
"I used to do plays every year when I was in school, and I had forgotten how much fun it is," she said. Zabel's oldest daughter plays the evil queen, and her youngest plays young Snow White. Zabel said she's seen her oldest daughter adapt well to her first theater production.
"She's never done anything like this before, so for her to get on stage and be the evil queen and be out on stage most of the time has been really good for her," Zabel said.
Anna Jones, an eighth-grader who plays the face in the evil queen's mirror, said she's enjoyed being a part of the "Snow White" production for the chance "to be able to act like someone else." Seventh-grader Abi Velasquez, who plays a lady in waiting, said she liked having her hair and makeup done for the stage and also has benefited from her first acting role.
"It was pretty exciting, because I could do it with my friends, and it was a new experience : to be more outgoing and do new things," Velasquez said.