Review: DGN’s “Freaky Friday” Musical
May 12, 2021
I used to watch the movie “Freaky Friday” all the time growing up with my sisters, so when my friend told me it was the musical I was extremely excited.
Obviously the original movie wasn’t a musical, so I was eager to see how DGN’s theatre program would alter it to include songs. Even with minor changes to the plot, it was very enjoyable to watch especially to see all the time and hard work it required.
The first scene sets with the mom, Katherine (Olivia Balicki, Cora Lingenfelter) and daughter, Ellie (Renee Boone, Delaney Durbin) in a fight. Both gripping a ‘magical’ hourglass, they break it and exchange bodies.
Ellie has to go through the day as her mom, doing wedding tasks; meanwhile, Katherine goes to school and has to pretend to be Ellie. They grow throughout the day learning more about each other and finally see each other’s perspectives.
The lights, the music, and the stage were the elements that first stood out to me. Sophomore lighting designer Robby Boucher and the lighting crew fit the lights with each scene, whether it be a spotlight, a scene setter or a camera flashing. Filled with all colors, it made the stage pop.
In a normal year, the orchestra would be in the auditorium in front of the stage. But due to the circumstances this year, they had to play the music live from their band room. With the help of Fine Arts department chair Brayer Teague, the sound crew, headphones, and TV set ups, communication ran impressively smooth to the orchestra pit.
The scene changes were very quick as well. They used five four-sided moving blocks, each with a different setting: lockers at school, flowers for the wedding, the kitchen, and the city. I thought this was super efficient and each side fit each scene.
My favorite scenes were the ones at the high school with the dynamic between the mean girls led by Savannah (Kate Crisp) and the outcasts like Ellie. The songs themselves were awesome as well, one of my favorites being “Women and Sandwiches” sung by the duo of Adam (Jonathan Isoniemi, Cole Cook) and Fletcher (Jacob Rambke). Overall, the vocals throughout the musical were incredible.
Balancing the CDC guidelines was another obstacle to overcome, but they did a fantastic job of dealing with it. Sometimes it was a little hard to hear them performing due to the masks, but other than that it was great. It was so fun to see all the hard work everyone involved with the musical put in and I am happy I got to experience it.