Drury to Perform Manilow's 'Copacabana'

By Jack GuerinoiBerkshires Staff
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The Drury High School Performing Arts Center will bring Barry Manilow's "Copacabana" to the Drury auditorium this week.
More than 65 students in the Drury arts wing will take their audience to where "music and passion were always the fashion" when they perform the musical based on Manilow's 1978 hit song this Thursday, Friday and Saturday.
"No one around here has really done 'Copacabana.' It is unique and is one of the first jukebox musicals," Technical Director Jamie Choquette said. "Also, it fits well with the groups of students that we have … we could visualize the parts right away."
The musical, that will be directed by Drury Stage Company Director Kate Caton, is about an aspiring songwriter writing about Lola who travels from Tulsa to New York City to break into showbiz. She meets Tony, a bartender, and composer, who falls in love with her and helps her become a Copa girl.
Lola then attracts the attention of club owner Rico who abducts her and takes her to his rival nightclub in Havana.
Tony and the whole Copacabana crew then set off to rescue Lola.
Choquette said after performing the musical "Amadeus" last year, they decided to do something a little more upbeat. 
"We did 'Amadeus' and it was huge but it was really dark and long and I think that the kids just wanted to have fun and 'Copacabana' is just a lot of fun," he said. "It has more color and flair … and we have pretty deep resources for technical stuff here and were able to be more creative with audio and lighting."
He said the musical utilizes the entire department including the band and the Drury Performing Arts Management class. He said students also helped design the set.  
Also, because the musical has a lot of dancing, they could bring in other students who may not have participated in a DPAC production before.
"We brought in a lot of kids who were just doing dance privately," he said. "Some students out there on the stage would never have been if it was just singing and acting. Those students are feeling more welcomed and we hope to get them more involved."
Choquette said the show opens Thursday at 7  p.m. There are also shows at the same time Friday and Saturday. There will be a matinee Saturday at 2. Tickets will be sold at the door.
"I think Drury offers something very unique and special in the arts … that I just don’t think you usually see at the high school level," Choquette said. "I think our community owes it to themselves to see what their students are doing."
"I think that there has always been a struggle to get the community up the hill and whatever we can do to get them up to see it we will do," he said. "We rarely get anyone that is disappointed." 

Tags: DPAC,   Drury High,   high school musical,   

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