Thursday, December 22, 2016

Tarzan swings into Hamilton

Tarzan, played by Cole Kaiser, meets Jane (Mallory Draisma).

Brianna Laarman and Caitlin Carrroll
T’Hawk Staff Writers

Disney’s Tarzan made its appearance at Hamilton High School Dec. 4-6 in many different ways.

Prior to the show, Mr. Connelly said there would be some new surprises, but that it would be very close to the plotline from the animated version.

“It just sounded fun,” said senior Brea Heneveld, who played Kala in the play. “Also, I love Disney movies and wanted to be apart of one, so to speak.”

Tarzan is a family friendly musical, with talented actors and pit musicians. There were nine primary characters performed by nine different actors and actresses, Kala, Kerchak, Young Tarzan, Terk, Tarzan, Jane, Professor Porter and Clayton. The lead Tarzan was played by Cole Kaiser and Mallory Jo Draisma played Jane.

Baby Tarzan finds himself alone in a jungle in Africa after a leopard killed his parents. Kala, an ape mother who just lost her own child to the same leopard, finds him and raises him as her own.

Tarzan grows up as part of the ape family. The story continues on with his struggles of growing up ape.

English scientists find themselves in Tarzan’s jungle, looking to observe the gorillas that live there. Tarzan runs into the head scientist’s daughter, Jane Porter. As the story progresses, Tarzan and Jane get to know each other more, and Tarzan uncovers more of his past.

When it came time for the Englishmen to leave, Tarzan and Jane battled with an important decision.

In the end, Jane decides to stay in the jungle with Tarzan.

“Overall, Tarzan was a hit,” senior Edward Watson said. “Everyone I talked to only had good things to say, and I feel like it is really our defining play.”

It takes a lot of people to produce such a hit like this. Mr. Connelly is the director, and is involved in everything for the production.

Mr. Prins is the auditorium manager: he makes sure everything related to tech, such as the lights, projections and sound, runs smoothly, with the help of the backstage techies. The backstage techies also helped make the props fly.

Many were involved on the musical side too. Mrs. Israels taught the music and directed the pit orchestra during the shows. Mr. Suhusky taught the accompaniment and played in the pit orchestra during the shows.

Behind the scenes, there were many helping with more than the performance. Mrs. Gansen made all the costumes, and Mrs. Boerman made the props and painted the scene.

Cole Kaiser, who played the adult Tarzan, said everyone grew together as a family.

“We all bonded really well,” he said. “If someone was having a hard time learning their lines, we would all get in a circle and try to help them. We were always bringing each other up and trying to help.”

“I love the fellowship I have developed with other actors,” said Alec Shrode, who played Professor Porter.

There is always a little bit of pressure being in a play.

“I’d say there was a bit of pressure to perform well, mainly from other cast members, and we all wanted to do well to give the seniors a good last show,” said Ben Duimstra, who played Terk.

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