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HomeArtSpring Hill Christian Academy's production of "Newsies"

Spring Hill Christian Academy’s production of “Newsies”

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It’s a film. It’s a Broadway play. It’s a cultural staple. And now, “Newsies” will be performed on Thursday, January 18th, at 7 p.m., on Friday, January 19th at 7 p.m. and on Saturday, January 20th, at 2 p.m., at the SHCA Theater Arts at Spring Hill Christian Academy.

“Newsies” tells the dynamic story of the real-life newsboy’s strike of 1899 in New York City, in which a group of brave, working-class young men went up against publishing titan Joseph Pulitzer. Young hero Jack Kelly, a rebel with dreams of becoming an artist, leads his fellow newsboys in a revolt after Pulitzer elevated newspaper purchase prices at the newsboys’ expense.

This story was dramatized first in the 1992 musical film “Newsies,” a Disney production that marked many theatrical milestones; including the nomination of a Young Artist Award for
Outstanding Young Ensemble Cast in a Motion Picture. In addition, the film marked early performances by respected actor Christian Bale, along with long-established character actors Max Casella, Luke Edwards, Gabriel Damon, David Moscow and Ele Keats.

Devoted fans of “Newsies” became known as “fansies.” Soon, “Newsies” hit the stage with the theatrical production, featuring music by Alan Menken, lyrics by Jack Feldman and a book by Harvey Fierstein based on the film’s screenplay by Bob Tzudiker and Noni White. The musical premiered at the Paper Mill Playhouse in 2011 and made its Broadway debut in 2012, where it played for more than 1,000 performances before touring and won the Tony Awards for Best Choreography and Best Original Score.

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The Broadway stage production made a star of actor Jeremy Jordan, and the production itself was filmed for a limited movie theater release—bringing “Newsies” home to both the stage and screen. Now, “Newsies” is set to be performed at the Spring Hill Baptist Church, 3140 Mariner Blvd., Spring Hill.

“We are excited to bring ‘Newsies’ to the stage this upcoming January 2024,” said Jessica Doyaga, stage manager of the SHCA theater arts program. ‘Newsies’ is my favorite.”

“Newsies” will be presented on January 18, 19 and 20 by the SHCA theater arts program at Spring Hill Christian Academy directed by Leslie Hood, choreographed by Cosette Hood, with State Manager Jessica Doyaga and Costumer Designer Teresa Richards.

Cosette Hood is proud to present “Newsies” as the latest production of SHCA Theater Arts. Fostering a love for theater and the arts is the goal of the Spring Hill Christian Academy theater arts program; a polished and creative student theater program that offers a musical theater class for high school students.

“It’s a great score with a fast-paced storyline that is based on a moment in history when kids were able to change a wrong, by using intelligence and sticking together,” said Hood. “What a great lesson for kids today. We tell them they can change the world, and this show sends them on a journey with historical proof.”

Hood views “Newsies” as a multi-layered jewel of a production that offers something to please everyone.

“It’s high energy with amazing music and dance and is historically based!” said Hood. “You will find yourself tapping your toes and leave feeling ignited! Our students fell in love with the show six years ago and have been waiting for the chance to bring it to the stage.”

The cast and crew overcame a few challenges in the mounting of this show. “The age of the cast wasn’t as big a challenge as the fact that we have no trained dancers in a dance show,” Hood continued.

The “Newsies” crew put a great deal of their time and effort into this production. “All of our rehearsal time is extracurricular and not during class,” said Hood. “But students used videos of the choreographer and tracks with vocal parts at home when they were not rehearsing together on stage. We only rehearse three days a week, so this cast had a lot to do on their own.”

“Newsies” is a positive production that offers viewers several worthwhile messages.

“Perseverance pays; It paid off for our actors as they worked to mount the show and it paid off for the real newsboys of New York in 1899 to get a decent working wage and to be treated as valued employees of the newspapers,” Hood said.

Tickets for “Newsies” are $10 per person. Get yours today at shcata.booktix.com.

[Credit: State Manager Jessica Doyaga]
[Credit: State Manager Jessica Doyaga]
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey
Megan Hussey is a features journalist and author who is the winner of Florida Press Association honors and a certificate of appreciation from LINCS (Family Support Domestic and Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force) and Sunrise Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Center for her newspaper coverage of these issues. She graduated cum laude from Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., with a journalism major and English/sociology minor, and previously wrote for publications that include the Pasco editions of The Tampa Tribune and Tampa Bay Times. A native of Indiana, she lives in Florida.
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