NORTH KINGSTOWN—With beautiful weather and just the right amount of sunshine, Tuesday afternoon was, quite possibly, the epitome of a summer afternoon in North Kingstown but, instead of spending their time at the beach soaking up the sun and battling waves, the members of the NK Creative Dramatics Program sat inside a bland white room at the Cold Spring Community Center running through lines and rehearsing scenes.
Turns out, the group is just waiting for this weekend to have their fun.
As part of the 2011 Summer Arts program of the North Kingstown Arts Council, the Creative Dramatics program will present “Camp Rock: The Musical” this weekend at North Kingstown High School.
The presentation, which takes place Saturday night at 7 p.m. and Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m., features two different casts of over 25 members and promises to be one of the most fun local music productions of the summer.
At least that’s what program director Lindsay Dias hopes audiences take away from the shows.
“Well, we’ve been doing Disney princess shows like Beauty and the Beast and Alice in Wonderland for the past few years and I wanted to do something different,” Dias said. “So we did Camp Rock, which is an upbeat, fun rock show.”
Dias’ group has been working tirelessly since April to perfect their interpretation of the story, which centers on two rival camps of performers trying to outdo each other to see “who’s going to be the last camp standing” and, if nothing else, Dias says the performance is sure to have audience members singing along and rooting for which camp they want to see win.
“We’re hoping to have a lot of people come see the show and have a good time,” Dias said. “It’s very entertaining. It’s a great show to see for kids of all ages and adults of all ages.”
Davisville Middle School students Emma Shindell and Michaela Sullivan play the role of Mitchie Torres, a young musician who has dreams of going professional. Shindell plays the role on Saturday night, Sullivan on Sunday and both are excited to show the audience the fruits of three months’ worth of hard work.
“We’ve all worked so hard and we just want to put on a great show for people,” Sullivan said.
“We’ve been working on it since April,” added Shindell. “We auditioned and then we started rehearsals right after. We took a lot of dancing and we put a lot of that into the show and it’s a really, really big cast. It’s such a good thing to have such a large number of people.”
Asked if the sacrifice of time and energy has been worth it, Shindell says there’s no doubt.
“For me, it’s really not that much of a sacrifice because I love doing it and I know everyone loves being here,” she said. “It’s a lot but what can you do? It’s a lot of fun and I’d much rather be here than anywhere else.”
With just a few days left before the big show, Shindell, Sullivan and the rest of the cast are working hard to nail down the final details and make the show as memorable as possible.
“It’s pretty crazy but everyone always pulls it together,” Sullivan said. “Sometimes you’re just like ‘Oh, this is never going to work out’ but then you get on stage and everyone’s like ‘this is real’ and it just happens.”
And even if Disney musicals aren’t your thing, Shindell said, there’s plenty of reason to come out and see the show.
“The set’s great, the people in the show are absolutely fabulous, it’s so much fun, the music is so catchy and the songs will get stuck in your head for a while,” she said. “It’s a lot of fun to come see how people play other parts and I totally suggest coming to both shows because it’s two different casts and you definitely want to see each cast because each cast is so different.”
“I’m pretty pumped and I just want to see everything come together and have the audience have a great time watching us,” added Sullivan. “And they’ll be rooting for which camp they want [to win]. It’s hard not to.”
Camp Rock: The Musical, which features Jack Petit as Shane Gray, Daniel Cook as Nate Gray, Daniel Fine as Jason Gray and Nicholas Hammond as Luke Williams, takes place Saturday and Sunday at North Kingstown High School. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 for adults and children 12 and over at the door.