ST. JACOBS – Everybody get ready to “cut loose”! After many interviews, auditions, and multiple callbacks, the Drayton Entertainment Youth Academy has announced the cast and technical team of talented youth that has been assembled for the sophomore High School Musical Production of Footloose, which dances onto the stage of the St. Jacobs Country Playhouse from Feb. 14 to 25.
Now in its second year, the Drayton Entertainment Youth Academy High School Musical Production boasts a company of high school students who are not only taking center stage, but also filling key offstage roles including directing, lighting, sound, running crew, stage management and wardrobe alongside the respective Drayton Entertainment department heads serving as their mentors.
This year, 50 students from 20 high schools will come together to bring to life the highly anticipated follow-up to last year’s sold-out inaugural production, Legally Blonde.
The Drayton Entertainment Youth Academy is committed to generational change and aims to dismantle the financial, cultural and physical barriers that have traditionally existed in arts education.
As such, the High School Musical Production Program is offered 100% free of charge.
Drayton Entertainment’s Associate Artistic Director and Director of Education David Connolly will direct and choreograph.
Connolly’s resumé includes numerous Drayton Entertainment productions including Mamma Mia!, Kinky Boots, Annie, Hairspray, Disney’s Newsies, and the popular family pantos Wizard of Oz, Jack and the Beanstalk, and Cinderella.
Footloose is an explosive story about a city teenager who moves to a small farming town where rock music and dancing have been banned. It features songs that expand on the movie’s original score, including hits from the bestselling, Oscar-nominated soundtrack.
“There’s a great story of what it means to be a family, what it means to be a friend, and what it means to face adversity,” said Connolly.
“Footloose celebrates the wisdom of listening to young people while guiding them with a warm heart and open mind. It’s a perfect match to the mission of our academy.”
“Footloose marks another exhilarating chapter in our High School Musical Production Program, a testament to the profound impact of arts education on young minds,” said Drayton Entertainment artistic director Alex Mustakas.
Platform for students
“This program is more than a stage production; it is a platform for students to discover their voices, build confidence, and learn invaluable life skills that will inspire a lifelong love for the arts, emphasizing the vital role of creativity in shaping well-rounded individuals and vibrant communities.”
The award-winning, not-for-profit theatre company has been steadily growing its training offerings for young performers over the past several years, including launching its new, state-of-the-art training hub, the Drayton Entertainment Youth Academy. Its mission is to provide performing and technical arts training opportunities anchored in the Drayton Entertainment brand of live theatre excellence, facilitated by professional industry mentors.
The sophomore Drayton Entertainment High School Musical Production Footloose is on stage from Feb. 14 to 25 at the St. Jacobs Country Playhouse.
Footloose is sponsored by Brad Carr and Susan Wagler of West Montrose. The 2024 season sponsor of all Drayton Entertainment Youth Academy Programs is the Heffner Group of Companies.
Tickets are $42.50 for adults, $32.50 for youth under 20, and $37.50 for groups of 20 or more. HST is applicable to all ticket prices. Tickets may be purchased by calling toll free at 1-855-drayton (372-9866), or online at draytonentertainment.com.