Local Chattahoochee High School students along with Principal Tim Corrigan are showcasing their vocal, acting and dance talents on the soon-to-be demolished stage of the “Weismann Theatre”. Their spring musical production Follies, allows them to step back in time and participate in a reunion of Weismann's "Follies" shows and the famous showgirls who performed there every year between the two world wars. The once magnificent theatre is barely holding together filled with the ghosts of the glamorous showgirls who effortlessly glide through the theatre unaware of the disappointments of the living.
The show’s love “quadrangle” focuses on reunion attendees former sweet and petite Weismann girl Sally, husband Buddy who attempts to keep a positive façade in place, stylish and elegant Phyllis and renowned husband Ben. Phyllis and Ben are at a tense impasse in their relationship, Sally and husband Buddy have seemingly also lost any magic they had together too. As their stories begin to unfold, Roscoe, the old master of ceremonies, introduces former Weismann performers at the reunion including Stella Deems, who had lost her radio job and is now a store owner in Miami; Solange La Fitte, a who remains flirtatious even at 66; Hattie Walker, who has outlived five younger husbands; Emily a former dancer who now owns an Arthur Murray franchise; Heidi Schiller whose remembrances are confused but who cares when you can sing, and Carlotta Campion, now an established TV and film star who has embraced the challenges of life and toasts her own survival. The guests reminisce in their individual showcase performances.
As the guests ruminate, the memories of Ben, Phyllis, Buddy and Sally also come to life in the apparitions of their young counterparts. Each of the four are disturbed at how life has changed them. Phyllis and Ben angrily discuss their lives and relationship, which has become numb and emotionless. Sally is bitter at love lost and has never been truly happy with Buddy, although he has always adored her. She accuses him of having affairs while he is on the road, and he admits he has a steady girlfriend, Margie, in another town, but always returns home. As the madness and confusion between the couples mounts, the couples are engulfed by their follies. The rundown theatre turns into "Loveland" and a group nervous breakdown ensues. A series of musical numbers follows performed by the principal characters, each exploring their biggest desires. As dawn approaches, "Loveland" dissolves back into the reality of the crumbling and half-demolished theatre; Ben admits to Phyllis his admiration for her and Buddy promises to work things out with the emotionally devastated Sally. Their ghostly younger selves reappear, watching them go. The younger Ben and Buddy call out to their "girls upstairs", and the Follies end.
Director Haley Walter believes that persons in the community who come to the show will find that the show has a little bit of something for everyone….even if they don’t have a student in the show. “The characters are adults and working on adult situations that can really be meaningful to someone in a marriage or long term relationship, reminding them of something they loved when they were younger and felt alive”. She believes audiences will find the musical production numbers especially fun to watch. Musical Director Jennie Fabianski is delighted to have a full orchestra present in the only local high school with a physical pit. Fabianski has deployed every instrument she can in building a 30 person orchestra to create a sound that is very different.
This week is the last run with performances March 8-10 at 7:00 p.m. While tickets may be purchased at the door, tickets can also be secured online at www.chattahoocheechorus.com.