Jeff Servetas as Shrek at a Fairy Tale Ball in Northeast Harbor. The Acadia Community Theater production of “Shrek, The Musical” opens April 7. ISLANDER PHOTO BY MARK GOOD

Ogre and friends to take the stage



BAR HARBOR — Acadia Community Theater (ACT) will perform “Shrek, The Musical” at Mount Desert Island High School on Friday, April 7, at 7 p.m., Saturday, April 8, at 7 p.m. and Sunday, April 9, at 2 p.m., and at The Criterion Theatre on Friday, April 14, at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 15, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.

Cast members from the Acadia Community Theater production of “Shrek” at the Fairy Tale Ball in Northeast Harbor on Saturday. ISLANDER PHOTO BY MARK GOOD

Based on the DreamWorks Animation movie, the musical tells the story of the ogre Shrek, who travels with his friend Donkey to rescue a princess so that she can marry a king and break a curse through true love’s first kiss. Along the way, Shrek and Donkey meet a variety of unusual fairy tale characters, face a fire-breathing dragon and learn life’s greatest lessons.

Directed by Mark Puglisi, a teacher at MDI High School and an ACT board member, the show features a cast of more than 65 youths and adults, including puppeteers, tap dancers, singing blind mice and many more.

“We wanted to do the show because there are lots of opportunities for people to have a variety of roles. I also love the message, and it appeals to the seventh grader in me,” said Puglisi.

“We think we have a pretty good, family-friendly production that people of all ages will enjoy. The humor is timeless.”

Jeff Servetas, a veteran of the MDI High School and Grand Auditorium stages, plays the brusque, but lovable ogre, Shrek. Christina Longstreeth plays the strong-willed, sassy Fiona and choreographed all the dance numbers in the musical. The couple is joined on the stage by Jon Wood, who plays the cheerful companion, Donkey, Julie Creed, who voices the Dragon, and Brian Booher, who performs as the villain Lord Farquaad.

Music direction is by Annie Leonardi-Merchant and Vivian Hyde. A volunteer pit orchestra with percussion, strings, woodwinds and horns accompanies the show. Led by Angel Hochman and Jaylene Roths, the costume crew produced everything from ogre horns to armor to sheep and wolf outfits. Doug Van Gorder produces the show, and Hochman also serves as stage manager.

Jasper Wyman & Sons is a major sponsor, and additional financial support has been provided by many local businesses. “We’re thrilled that so many donors value ACT’s mission to foster growth and expression through theater arts,” said Keri Hayes, ACT board chair.

“Theater is magical, and we hope that audiences and community members participating in the show will develop a lifelong love and appreciation for live performances.” The Maine Theater Fund of the Maine Community Foundation also provided a grant that helped Acadia Community Theater purchase microphones worn by performers in “Shrek.”

Tickets cost $15 for adults and $10 for seniors and children 12 and under, as well as active military. All shows are general admission. Tickets can be purchased at the door or reserved in advance via the “Store” on the ACT website, www.acadiacommunitytheater.net. Contact acadiacommunitytheater@gmail.com.

Acadia Community Theater, or ACT, seeks to enrich the lives of individuals, families and the community by encouraging growth and expression in theater arts and by providing live performances on and around Mount Desert Island. Originally formed as the After School Players in 1994, the group was later renamed the Union 98 Teachers’ Theater and then became the 501(c)3 nonprofit organization Acadia Community Theater in 2000. Each year, the organization stages a spring musical and a fall play, among other activities, providing opportunities for young people and their families to participate in and enjoy theater together.

 

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