Take another trip down the rabbit hole with Mansfield High School's production of "The Trials of Alice in Wonderland." The musical will chronicle the tale of Alice on trial for growing and changing. If Alice is found guilty, she will have to pay the Queen of Heart's price. Will Alice lose her head in this mind boggling journey into self acceptance?
The musical will be staged at 7 p.m. April 29 and at 3 p.m. April 30 in the Mansfield High School Cafetorium, 2500 U.S. 71 South in Mansfield.
The play will be directed by Eryn Hunt, theatre director for the school, with Jessica White as the music director based on the book by William J. Brooke with music by Eric Rockwell and lyrics by Joanne Bogart.
"Mrs. White and I had discussed a joint project for the past couple of years," Hunt said. "We wanted the opportunity to showcase the artistic talents of our choir and drama students."
This past summer, Hunt said she found that "The Trails of Alice in Wonderland" suited both of the directors' needs without being too over the top and that it would connect with the students involved.
The role of Alice will be played by two different actresses within the play, depending on her size in the scenes. Alice will be played by Mansfield senior LeAnn Lawrence, while Tiny Alice will be played by junior Alyx Puterbaugh.
"I prepared for Alice by putting myself in the place of a young girl," Lawrence said of this role, her last performance at the school. "I thought a lot about what it was like for me growing up and not knowing where exactly I'm supposed to fit in."
According to Puterbaugh, audiences can expect a musical reminiscent of the classic Disney movie.
Tweedledee and Tweedledum will be Alice's attorneys, played by actual brothers Tyler and Corey Schmidt. Tyler said the musical offers a lesson to viewers.
"Audiences should expect to take away the lesson that even though one changes physically, you are still the same person on the inside," he said.
Nicholas Van Herpen will bring the absurd and often mischievous Cheshire Cat to life. Herpen is the most like his character, according to others in the cast.
"We never know where he's coming from or what he's going to say next," Lawrence said of Herpen.
Rounding out the cast will be freshman Jessica George, who plays the White Rabbit. This will be her first performance.
As this will be Lawrence's last performance, she has words of encouragement for her younger costars and students new to acting.
"Mistakes are always made," she said. "The important thing is to not overthink the role and just enjoy yourself."
Tickets for "The Trials of Alice in Wonderland" are $2 for adults, $1 for students and free for children 5 and younger.