Bremen's musical kicks off this weekend

BREMEN — Bremen students are bringing the tropics home with "South Pacific," the school's spring musical.
"It's been smooth sailing, no pun intended," said director Kathy Overmyer of the show. "We have a pretty well-balanced group this year, meaning both guys and gals. That lends itself to a strong chorus. I thought this (show) would be something the kids would enjoy."
The story follows Emile de Becque (played by senior Jarred Fitch), a middle-aged French plantation owner who falls in love with Nellie Forbush (played by senior Haley Foster), a young U.S. Navy nurse stationed in the South Pacific.
"My character is a hopeful romantic who had a tragic falling-out earlier in life and had to escape to a tropical island," said Fitch. "He's a middle-aged man who's never found love. After meeting Miss Forbush, he falls in love after only a short time."
Fitch said his friendship with Haley Foster as his romantic interest in the play made the experience less awkward.
"Things that would have normally been awkward were not," said Fitch.
Fitch added that he appreciates his character's honesty and truthfulness about what he feels and believes.
"I like (the character's) optimistic attitude toward things," said Fitch. "This is one of the best-put together shows that Bremen has had in a long time."
"I love my character," said Foster. "She falls in love with (Emile de Becque) but then she finds out some stuff about his past. But when he goes off to war she realizes that none of that matters. I love her personality — it's a lot like my personality. Nellie is willing to fight for the man she loves. If there's something I would fight for, it would be that."
Foster said it was a challenge to learn the accent required for her part. She added that the fun cast made up for any difficulties.
"We are a really close cast — we have so many laughs," said Foster. "I really think that all the chorus numbers we sing, when everybody is on stage, is the best part of the show. The boys number in the beginning is really good too."
Foster said South Pacific is the perfect show with which to end her high school theater career.
"I feel very blessed in my senior year to be able to have such a fun show and a great cast," said Foster. "It's definitely a good memory to end with."
Eighteen musicians will bring the heart of the show to the stage from the pit.
Trumpet player LaurieAnne Wickens said she enjoys the music of South Pacific because it's a variety of different styles.
"It doesn't feel like all the same thing," said Wickens. "The opening overture is my favorite part. It has a combination of all the different songs — it kind of sums up the musical."
She said Tuesday during rehearsal that playing along with the actors is usually difficult for the first few times.
"This is only our second day in the pit and it's been pretty successful so far," said Wickens. "It's going better than usual."
South Pacific opens March 22 at 7:30 p.m. and continues March 23 at 7:30 p.m. and March 24 at 2 p.m.
Cast members include: Haley Foster, Jarred Fitch, Yridia Ayvar, Corynne Lindsey, Bay Cope, Jamie Hughes, Trey Overholser, Griff Hertenstein, Brad Foster, Ryan Hummel, Brayden Lancaster, Evan Wilson, Abby Campbell, Karis Fanning, Alaina Huffman, Haley Snyder, Heidi Prawat, Brooke Tolle, Amanda Napier, Nele Hummel, Alex Adams, Shyanna Jimenez, Diane Stichter, Olivia McFarland, Hannah Becker, Tommy Foster, Ben Nick, Matt Doll, Alejandro Alvarado, Austin Ingle, Luke Wonnacot, Trent Stichter, Anthony Avery.
Pit members include Erica Gallegos, Alex Lohse, Lorinda Kline, Salvador Perez, Justin Niles, Jazsper SilverRaven, LaurieAnn Wickens, Zac Compton, Giovanni Escalante, Nick Bonebrake, Olivia DeLaGarza, Justin Hyde, Jon Dani, Regan Murphy, Kylie Murphy, Amanda Spearman, Wil Rogers, Cole McCord.