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‘People are going to be wowed,’ director says of upcoming shows

First live, in-person performances in two years for Korah Musical Theatre performers

For the first time in two years, Korah Musical Theatre performers will be able to entertain audiences in a live, in-person production.

Frozen Jr., directed by Korah Collegiate music teacher Denine Williams, will run from May 25 to 28 at Korah Auditorium. 

“I picked Frozen Jr. because I wanted a show for the younger audiences, to be able to see live theatre again after all the stress the kids have been through, learning online and staring at a computer, and to me music uplifts people,” Williams said.

While Disney’s Frozen was an animated film made for cinemas, Frozen Jr. is a version of the original story made specifically for high school musical productions.

In Frozen Jr., the character of Anna sets out to break the icy magical spell of her sister - Snow Queen Elsa - over her realm, determined to save it from the cold grip of perpetual winter.

Williams said many of the songs have a feeling of renewal, necessary after a long pandemic.

“There are little analogies in the music that can be referenced to what’s happening in our own lives. I think it’s really nice to have a perspective, even if it’s fictional, where everything is better and everything is magical and everything can be fixed. I think it’s been really good for everybody. It’s brightened everybody,” said Korah Grade 11 student Dylan McKee, who plays the key role of Anna.

“I can’t give it all away, but because of the technical help we’ve had, people are going to be wowed,” Williams said.

“It’s very theatrical and it has a lot of background aspects, like the lighting, the stage sets, the music…it helps the singers and the actors shine even more,” McKee said.

There are approximately 35 members in the double casted production, meaning twice the usual number of performers get a chance to appear on stage.  

Elementary school students will be brought in to see the show for day performances next week.

“That's my most exciting time. I don’t even watch the stage. I watch the kids’ reactions,” Williams said.

Frozen Jr. represents a return to a live, in-person annual production for Williams and the Korah Musical Theatre since The Sound of Music in February 2020, just before COVID struck.

Williams and students produced a virtual version of Les Miserables in 2021.

“It feels a little overwhelming because at this time of year there’s graduation and the Sault College convocation where we’re singing. We were supposed to do this in December 2021 but everything got shut down. It’s been stressful for all of us, but for the first time in forever we’ve been allowed to do this,” Williams said.

“Everyone needs to come and see the show because I want everyone to sing Let It Go at the end of the show. I’m going to invite the audience to sing at the end if they want because you need to let it go and relax and have a good time and watch these talented kids. The singing is going to blow everyone away. Some of them don’t need microphones but we’re going to mic them.”

“This is Broadway quality. The lights, the sounds, the voices, people will not be disappointed, and bring your kids out,” Williams said.

“Korah performers blow me away every time. They do a fantastic job. I’ve been involved with music my whole life and these guys are phenomenal. It’s been really good to get involved with them again after the pandemic, before some of them graduate. They deliver every time,” said Elizabeth Moran, Frozen Jr. stage manager.

“The kids deserve to be able to do this again after the pandemic,” Williams said.

Tickets are available at Korah Collegiate’s main office or at Station Mall Box Office.

The May 27 performance will be preceded by a 5:30 p.m. dinner and show fundraiser.

Tickets for the dinner and show are limited in availability and must be purchased in advance.

All funds raised from Frozen Jr. ticket sales go back into Korah arts programming and scholarships for music grads.