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Theater-loving students come together to put on the annual All State Musical

90+top+student+performers+will+come+together+to+perform+in+the+All+State+musical.+Last+year%2C+a+large+group+of+students+presented+the+musical%2C+Big+Fish.+
90 top student performers will come together to perform in the All State musical. Last year, a large group of students presented the musical, Big Fish.

90 top student performers will come together to perform in the All State musical. Last year, a large group of students presented the musical, Big Fish.

Photo used permission of: Teah Mirabelli

Photo used permission of: Teah Mirabelli

90 top student performers will come together to perform in the All State musical. Last year, a large group of students presented the musical, Big Fish.

Annette Suk, Staff Writer

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Ninety students from 45 schools will come together to perform the annual All State Musical at the Theater Festival. With over 4,500 students, teachers, and others coming to the festival, the group of students will work to execute a flawless show.

The Illinois High School Theatre Festival, IHSTF, is the largest and oldest high school theater festival in the nation. 350 students auditioned for In the Heights, the All State Musical, and 90 top student performers were selected from 49 high schools to take a part in the show. Out of those 350 people, 6 students from LZ made it in.

Preparation for the All State Musical includes 40 hour weekend rehearsals for 5 shows over three days. However, Teah Mirabelli, senior, enjoys the fast-paced and “amazing” experience IHSTF offers. As this is her second year being part of the cast, she says she is honored to represent the school playing as a lead’s understudy.

“It feels amazing to just be honored from your school. Especially since 10,00 theater kids are coming to see this one show. 2,000 people fit in the theater at one time and we do five shows at Theater Fest so around 10,000 people will see it,” Mirabelli said. “I would say the biggest benefit would be the people that you meet and how fast paced it is. I feel like this is the closest professional feeling of theater before you actually make it into a professional theater show.”

With a talented group of students joining together to perform, Mirabelli explains further of the difficulties she and others face attempting to be a part of the cast or crew.

“It is very hard because especially since musical theater is very subjective. You have to fit the roles that are in the show. In the Height is made up of a cast of all Latino people, but not all Latino people are going to try out. From out of those 300 people, they chose 100 people to call back and so I was called back for two of the leads and there’s probably six people called back to each lead,” Mirabelli said. “I ended up getting the understudy for the lead, which is still super cool.”

Mirabelli recalls the past before deciding to try out for All State. With theater in mind for college, she wanted the experience and was “shocked” and “amazed” by the people and production.

“I made it and I was absolutely shocked and amazed. I was so honored and had the best time last year. I met so many amazing people and the directors that I worked with were amazing.” Mirabelli said.

While actors are performing on-stage, crew members are needed to run the show backstage to prevent accidents. Emma Belew, senior, is the assistant stage manager. Wanting to go towards stage management for her career, she says All State is a “great” opportunity.

“I want to go into stage management as my career. So based off the professional nature of the show and how everyone has such a committed work ethic, everyone there is so passionate about what they do. That’s just something I really wanted to experience before college and have that in my pocket and work with a group of people like that,” Belew said. “I became an assistant stage manager. We work with the adults, which is really cool because they treat us like equals and it’s so cool seeing the behind-the-scenes and expands the view of the whole project.”

For students attempting to try out next year, she suggests All State can be difficult to get in. However, she advises students to be curious and well-rounded.

“Be as well-rounded as you possibly can be and never lose your curiosity and ability to learn. That’s what I feel has got me so far. Everyone I met so far has commented on how I’m always trying to learn new things, willing to do new things, and try new things,” Belew said. “They really look for that because that keeps the company growing and that’s what they want to see.”

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About the Writer
Annette Suk, Staff Writer

As a sophomore, Annette is in her second year of journalism and her first year as a staff writer. When she isn’t busy worrying about her viola skills, you can find her laughing loudly with her friends in the hallway. If she isn’t there, you can also locate her slumping around the halls, hungry and stressing over every aspect of her life. She loves spending her money on movies with friends and she loves coffee and TV.  Annette has no clue of what she wants to do in the future but likes to try out different classes and see what makes her interested.

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Theater-loving students come together to put on the annual All State Musical