Podium Players staging production of the musical ‘Honk, Jr.’ Nov. 14-16

By Merja H. Lehtinen - ReminderNews
East Hampton - posted Mon., Nov. 4, 2013
The cast of ‘Honk! Jr.’ practiced during a recent rehearsal. Photo courtesy of Podium Players. - Contributed Photo

More than 40 children make up the cast of Podium Players’ “Honk! Jr.,” the ageless story based on Hans Christian Andersen's 1844 book, “The Ugly Duckling.” With music by George Stiles, and the book, script and lyrics by Anthony Drune, “Honk! Jr.” was a Broadway version of the classic children’s book that teaches tolerance and kindness, regardless of looks. Podium Players will stage the production at East Hampton High School on Nov. 14-16.

The children were professionally engaged, dancing and singing to happy, upbeat tunes throughout rehearsals on Nov. 1 and 3.

Jenna Cordeiro, who plays Ida, the leading mother duck in the show, said it was interesting to her as her siblings were also in the musical. “It’s cool to step into the role of mother instead of sibling,” she said.

“I have always liked the story. It shows you shouldn’t ever judge someone because of how they look,” said Cordeiro.

Katrina Schwartz plays Noreen, another mother duck, who said mothers are a big part of keeping things fair among children.
Alex Ballette, who plays Drake, the father duck, said he likes his role, as he is “very sarcastic.”

All the child actors and actresses are between 5 and 17 - kindergarteners to seniors in high school - showcases a wide age range of young performers. The children in the cast are from East Hampton, Marlborough, South Windsor, Hebron and Manchester. The adult co-directors are Valerie Bozzie and choreographer Kim Cordeiro, with David Schwartz as the producer.

“Honk! Jr.” will be at East Hampton High School on Nov. 14 and 15 at 7 p.m., and Nov. 16 at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and children, available at Citizen’s Bank, the website www.podiumplayers.org or at the door.

The cast members are: Alex Balletto, London Brazal, Macie Brazal, Ella Briggs, Riley Briggs, Savannah Brody, Harper Carlson, Jenna Cordeiro, Lily Cordeiro, Mason Cordeiro, Anthony DeZinno, Jaimie Ferren, Jenna Gagne, Josh Gagne, Rachel Gardiner, Grace Garrett, Riley Harrington, Amanda Healey, Ryan Janowski, Darien Kupec, John Lee, Lydia Lee, Devon Mansfield, Charlotte Minnick, Julien Minnick, Natalie Moon, Kaitlyn Morris, Brendan Owen, Mary Rainville, Jaelena Rivera, Tiziana Robles, Caelan Schwartz, Elise Schwartz, Bewick, Katrina Schwartz, Maureen, Laura Schwartz, Natalie Sherer, Sarah Sherer, Brooke Soracchi, Jaelyn Taylor and Alex Wirth.

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