Hillsboro High School’s fall musical has been changed from “South Pacific” to “Once Upon a Mattress” because of licensing issues.
“I had both shows on my short list last spring,” director Lynn Just said. “Both shows seemed to fit our students, but we had never done ‘South Pacific’ before, so I chose it.
“Also, the first show I directed here at HHS was ‘Once Upon a Mattress,’ and I thought about waiting until next year, my 20th year here, to do it again,” Just added.
The licensing problem for “South Pacific” was because of a touring company. The licensing company didn’t tell Just the details, but said the situation fluctuated daily. It took several weeks before the change in musicals was finalized.
Cast members were aware of the situation, so they took the change well, Just said.
“They are great kids, and used to being flexible,” she said.
There were a few students who didn’t want to be in “South Pacific,” but did want to be in “Once Upon a Mattress,” so a follow-up audition was scheduled after the show changed, a decision made in the second week of September.
Another change this year, although not so sudden, is the assistant director. Terry Bebermeyer has assisted with the musical for 20 years, Just said, but stepped aside this year.
“Finding someone to replace him has been tough, because he is so knowledgeable in all the areas of theatre,” Just said.
USD 410 Board of Education approved a contract for Alexia Hall to be the assistant director this year.
“Once Upon a Mattress” is a musical by Jay Thompson, Marshall Barer, and Dean Fuller with music by Mary Rodgers and lyrics by Barer. It opened in 1959 off-Broadway and soon moved to Broadway. It is a comical adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, “The Princess and the Pea.”
HHS will present the musical Nov. 17, 18, and 19 in the high school auditorium.