Thursday, December 15, 2016

No One Beats the Yuletide Pride at North Pole High

Front cover of the program for the world premiere staged reading of North Pole High: The Musical
Swans-a-swimming! The musical based on my memoir had its first staged reading this month! I couldn't be there in person (way too much to do here in the Pole this time of year), but I know the cast was fabulous because, well, I've learned a few things from my dad and let's just say I see them when they're acting, I hear them when they sing.

North Pole High Musical Staged Reading starring (left to right) Andrea Fantauzzi as Vixen, Judy Nazemetz as Mrs. Claus, John Eddings as Santa Claus, James Giusti as Rudy Tutti, Monica Allan as Snowflake, Frankie Rodriguez as Silentnight, Samuel Thacker as Tinsel, and David Buckland as Mr. Polar Bear.
Many thanks to the cast, from left to right:

Andrea Fantauzzi played my classmate Vixen far more sympathetically than she came off in my book.

Judy Nazemetz (member of Actors' Equity Association)  played my dear mother, Mrs. Claus, so dearly.

John Eddings embodied the enormous body of my father, Santa Claus, so believable he could probably get away with subbing for my dad at some of the malls this Season. #HoHoHo

Lauren Byrd really nailed me in the lead role, except that she carols even more beautifully than I do.

James Giusti found his inner Scrooge to accurately portray Rudy Tutti, the new boy at North Pole High.

Monica Allan was so much fun as my best friend Snowflake it's almost like I have another best friend!

Frankie Rodriguez was hilarious as my shy classmate Silentnight.

Samuel Thacker truly rose to the occasion to portray the handsome half-elf Tinsel.

And last, but not least, David Buckland was so much like my real teacher, Mr. Polar Bear, that parts of the show were eerily like being in class at the real North Pole High.

The cast of North Pole High: The Musical, world premiere staged reading at New Musicals, Inc, December 3, 2016. Clockwise: James Giusti (seated, front) as Rudy Tutti, Judy Nazemetz as Mrs. Claus, John Eddings as Santa Claus, Andrea Fantauzzi as Vixen, Lauren Byrd as Candycane Claus, Samuel Thacker as Tinsel, Frankie Rodriguez as Silentnight, Monica Allan as Snowflake, and David Buckland as Mr. Polar Bear.
My thanks also to the writers. Danny couldn't fit everything from my book into his but managed to keep its Christmas Spirit front and center. Kristen and Rafi penned so many wonderful new tunes, from "Yuletide Pride" to "North Pole Prance," that we'll be singing them here at North Pole High for many Christmases to come. Like the song says, I'm on Top of the World!

Inside of program for world premiere staged reading of North Pole High: The Musical at New Musicals Inc, December 3, 2016
Thanks also to New Musicals, Inc., for hosting this world premiere event!