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HHS seniors set to perform 'Thoroughly Modern Millie'

Catherine Ellis rehearses. Catherine Ellis rehearses.

Hendersonville High School’s class of 2015 continues a 93-year-old tradition when it performs the senior play Thursday through Saturday. The senior class added a Saturday matinee for the first time in decades.

 

This year's snow, the musical comedy "Thoroughly Modern Millie," tells the story of Millie Dillmount, a young woman from a small town in Kansas who travels to New York City during the flapper era in pursuit of success. Based on the 1967 hit movie starring Julie Andrews, the stage musical premiered on Broadway in 2002, winning six Tony Awards including best musical.
“We’re really excited about the matinee,” said HHS theater teacher and play director Todd Weakly. “We just worked so hard on the play we figured we’d give it a shot and see if we can’t find some more audience members and give our performers an extra shot at doing the play.”
HHS has performed matinees before — many years ago.

"They've tracked (the senior play) to 1922 and they used to do matinees," said HHS principal Bobby Wilkins.

As a teacher and principal, Wilkins traces his own personal memory of senior plays to 1971, and he's fairly sure that in many years before that the HHS seniors did not perform a matinee.

HHS's graduating class first performed a year-end play in 1922 ("And Billy Disappeared.") After a gap of nine years, the spring performance resumed, with "The Masquers." After a hiatus during and after World War II, the senior play was revived in 1950 and has been performed every year since.

"Thoroughly Modern Millie" stars Carolyn Ryan as Millie, Jacob Fuqua and Mason Wagner as Jimmy and includes featured chorus and featured dancers and a large ensemble cast.

Shows are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are available at the HHS office during school hours and at the door.