Bah, Humbug!

Bah, Humbug!

FHS students Gina Ferri and Ali Funkhouser killin’ it in a group number, Humbug 2011

Marina Smoske, Writer

The sound of the grand piano and newly-rehearsed harmonies fill the recital hall at Franklin School for the Performing Arts as rehearsals for The Franklin Performing Arts Company’s production of Humbug!  continue.

Humbug! is a contemporary musical telling of Charles Dickens’ Christmas Carol, with a wide array of music including disco, contemporary Broadway hits, and several Michael Jackson numbers.

The cast features amateurs and professionals alike, including students from Franklin School for the Performing Arts (FSPA), members of the Franklin Performing Arts Company, and students from FSPA’s new Hudson location.

Nick Paone, an acting instructor at FSPA  as well as writer and co-director of Humbug! will reprise his role as Ebenezer Scrooge.

“I’m very excited, but it’s actually rather tiring.  I think I’m offstage for all of two minutes.  I have to work to be engaged in something I’ve written and directed for years.” said Paone.

The show features a 10 piece professional live orchestra, that, according to Paone, is “hard to find out here in the boondocks!”

Paone is constantly updating the show with fresh cultural references to keep the show interesting- even in its fourth production.

“I’m very distraught that we can’t do the show before the election,” he said. “’Binders full of women and Gangham style will be too passé, but you can still expect up-to-the-minute ad libs from news stories, tv shows, and memes.”

“It’s Michael Jackson: The Musical!” junior and fourth time cast member Ali Funkhouser joked. She went on to say that “it’s been cool to have been in every production of it since the first one in 2008. It’s fun to see how it’s changed from the original.”

Humbug! will run for three performances- Saturday, December 15th at 2pm and 7pm, and Sunday, December 16th at 2pm.

“The best thing about this show is the family feel for both the audience and the performers,” said Paone.

“We have Graham Hancock (an FHS sophomore) in a supporting role, his father in the chorus, and his little brother Collin in the children’s chorus.  It’s not very often families can share the stage.”

“We are one giant, freakish family!” said senior Gina Ferri of the cast.  “That’s why we get such a good product!”

Be sure to drop by the box office at 34 Main Street  or go online to buy your ticket to Humbug!

Bonus interview