A Newsies Recap


Aurora Doll

Prop newspaper sits at the ready before the “Newsies” show begins May 13.

By Aurora Doll, Reporter

“Newsies” is a musical based on the newsboy strike of 1899, set on the streets of New York City. At 7 p.m. on May 13, I went to see our theater department’s production of “Newsies.”Sophomore Jazzalin Mckay puts on makeup before performance May 13.

Sophomore Jazzalin Mckay puts on makeup before performance May 13. (Aurora Doll)

Before the show began, I got the chance to go backstage and take pictures of everyone getting their hair and makeup done. Having done tech for last year’s musical, I know the hard work that goes into the making of sets. The effort put into this year’s is very apparent. The backgrounds were well painted, and the main center prop was a large moveable structure. This structure was able to be spun around showing a whole new set with each turn.
The first thing I noticed after finding my seat was that the dim lighting and graphics along the wall were perfectly set to theme. There was a projection of places in New York from around the time of the real newsboy strike, and photos of newsboys.
The play began with lead actor Jack Kelly, played by sophomore Dorian Ackman, talking about his dreams of moving to Santa Fe, New Mexico. These dreams are very difficult for him to reach as the character is an orphan making a living selling newspapers.
The conflict of the show began when suddenly the prices were upped by the publisher, causing the newsboys to go on strike. With the help of a journalist they were able to start a union and get their demands met.
I was very impressed by how put together the choreography was just from the opening number, and it only got better throughout. I can imagine how difficult it was to learn and execute most of these dance numbers for the actors, yet all of them were executed perfectly.
The songs were easy to understand and the high notes and solos were very impressive. The five months of practice definitely showed.
“It’s the first time I’ve gotten the main lead role. I’m not used to the attention, so it’s a hard thing to handle but I love it, people are being so nice,” Ackman said
I asked Ackman what the best part of being in theater is, and he made it clear that while he loves performing, it’s the people who make it special.
“The cast and the crew were amazing, I love the theater community,” Ackman said.

In an interview with Ackman I asked him how he deals with the stress that comes with a big role like Jack Kelly.

“I meditate for a solid two minutes right behind the curtains, sitting down on the steps because it is nerve wracking, I just bring myself into the mind of the character, and that eases the nerves at least a little bit,” Ackman said.
Ackman says he plans to continue working with the theater group for the rest of high school. Overall I loved getting to see this musical. I can’t wait to see what musical and one act the theater department has in store for us next year.

Sophomore Dorian Ackman and Senior Gwendolyn Hall embrace in the end scene of “Newsies” May 13. (Aurora Doll)