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Rookie's Review of Lancer Productions

Who would have thought that we'd miss something so much that we'd only just begun a couple of months ago?
Seniors in the cast of Beauty and the Beast

As you may know (or have seen), Lancer Productions just recently put on their last show for the Broadway musical: Beauty and the Beast! Maybe you've had the opportunity to see a Lancer Production, or maybe you have yet to experience the magic. But before we go on, let us introduce ourselves. We are Gracie Henningsen and Delaney Fitzgibbon, seniors here at North Scott. Beauty and the Beast was our first and last production that we will ever get to be a part of here at the high school. To be included in such a special show was something we will never forget and want to encourage you to do while you still have the time. For us, our time has run out, but we weren’t too late that we didn’t get to be part of it. So what is it like to be a part of a Lancer Production, especially Beauty and the Beast? Well sit back, relax, and be our guest as we tell you our story on how we got to be a part of one of the biggest musical productions that North Scott has ever put on!


For me personally, I have been a dancer my entire life. I haven’t really ever had any time to

do any other activity in my life besides dance. I have watched the Lancer Production shows for years and it is always something I look forward to watching. I have always thought it would be so much fun to be in a show, but never had the courage to try out. I have considered it for many years now but always thought, I wouldn’t have time for it anyway. My good friend Anna Harris has done it her entire high school career and I have always admired the shows she was in. She has been trying to convince me to go out for the shows for years but I always thought I would never be able to do it. This year, once I heard that Beauty and the Beast was going to be the last show of the year, I started to rethink my decision. At my dance studio, Luminous Dance Force, Anna was always trying to get us all to do it, just for fun. We all were intrigued and began saying we were going out for the show as a joke until some of us decided we actually wanted to. I was thinking, why not end my senior year with something new? 

A few of the dancers and I went back and forth for a few days and it wasn’t until four hours before auditions that we decided to do it. We rushed to prepare for auditions, part of it being singing and the other part being, of course, dancing. Now I have no prior experience in singing besides freshman year choir LOL, so I was lacking in this department. I ended up going to auditions and trying my best. I found out later that week that I had made it. I was going to be a part of the show! I was pumped to start dancing, but nervous to be in such a new environment. On the first day of rehearsals I was openly welcomed by everyone, seriously everyone is SO sweet. I immediately felt comfortable and excited to get started. 

Now coming to the closing of the show was definitely a little bittersweet. I had made so many new friends, had so many new fun experiences, and overall had such a great time doing this show. With this production, there were many things that you had to get used to, including the long rehearsals, quick changes, WIGS, and more, but it was all SO worth it in the end. I had never felt more welcomed into an environment than I had with this one. Truly such an amazing experience and this is me telling you to try something new, you will not regret it. The feeling after you finish a show and people are coming up to you to congratulate you and tell you how amazing the show is, really makes it all worth it in the end. Even though this is my first and only show, I will never forget this experience. Thank you, LP!


Going to Anna's show last year not knowing I'd join her this year:)

When I heard that Beauty and the Beast would be the musical this year I was so excited. I could not wait to go see it and congratulate all my friends on their amazing show just as I always had. But then the intrusive thoughts came. Why not just be a part of the show?  It’s my senior year, after all. It looks like the most fun thing ever, why not just do it? The thoughts persisted throughout the week, leaving me with one major question: Why not? Later on, I talked to Anna Harris, one of my closest friends who’s been involved in theatre forever, and told her that I was thinking about doing the show. I told her I was scared but also excited to be stepping out of my comfort zone. With a love for singing and always admiring those on stage, I knew that I should just go for it, but I was just so stinkin’ nervous.

A Flash Mob at HyVee to promote the show!

As I thought more and more about it, not only did my excitement grow, but also my confidence when I said that I’d be doing it. The day came for auditions and I could not stay focused. I went back and forth on whether I was actually going to follow through with this spontaneous idea or not. But the audition time came and I stepped into the room. I sang for about 15 seconds, tried my absolute best to bust a move while learning a dance with everyone, and that was that. Had I made it or not? Well, here we are and I can happily say that my awful dance moves didn’t cast me out of the show. From the first rehearsals of learning the music, I began to make friends and look forward to the rest of the show.

Aria, Taylar, and I on our way to kill The Beast (sorry Thomas)

Adding choreography to the songs is what really got me into it. We were all laughing at the funny moves, but we all watched as it slowly but surely came together. At this point, where we started to have longer rehearsals, I was also balancing soccer. Going from soccer to the musical rehearsals was difficult at times due to my inability to go to sleep at a decent time, but there was never a day where I went to rehearsal and wasn’t excited to see everybody’s faces. The directors worked flawlessly to help me work out my schedule so I could enjoy every second. The show seemed to really be coming together and I was so excited to be part of something so special — so magical. Each show filled the seats in the auditorium and left me feeling so grateful to share these moments with the cast that had become a little family to me. I had joined something I never thought I would do, and now I look back and only wish I had the guts to do it sooner. 

Being friends with Anna Harris allowed us to have somebody who we always loved to see on stage, but were never too sure about joining. When we decided to give it a shot, we soon realized that this was an experience of a lifetime. Being able to perform each show for almost 800 people a night was something we won't forget. We received such good feedback from both our loved ones, but also strangers who had come to the show. We were able to connect with so many special people that we never would have met if it weren't for this musical. As each show passed, it became more bittersweet by the day. The last show put into perspective how close we had all gotten as a cast. Who would have thought that we'd miss something so much that we'd only just begun a couple of months ago? But the tears came as the show closed. This experience is something we are so grateful to be able to share with all of these talented people. We, along with the cast, our friends, families, and the community showed so much love and support for this show. Thank you Lancer Productions for taking a chance on us rookies. We won't forget this tale as old as time ;)

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I love that you guys could do this! It looks so fun! It's great to encourage others to be involved!

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