The Heartland Community School Theater was alive and well Friday and Saturday nights as the Heartland students performed the musical production, ‘Once On This Island’ under the direction of Mr. Lynn Hall.
The musical play was based upon the novel, “My Love, My Love” by Rosa Guy. It was a story of a young child scared of a violent storm. To calm the scared child, the peasant storytellers of the village unfold the tale of Ti Moune (Addie Swartendruber and Anna King), a young girl chosen by the island gods (Aaron Jensen, Brenan Erb, Morgan Tracy and Ashton Kroeker) for a magical fate. Ti Moune is rescued and raised by peasant village couple (Abigail Bechtel and Daniel Quiring). Ti Moune, after being rescued, turns around to try and rescue herself and Daniel (Lincoln Ruybalid), a member of the island’s ruling class, in the pursuit of love. Daniel is the illegitimate son of the Frenchman Armand (Luke Fochtman). Daniel rises up and conquers his ill-hearted father, but is left cursed by him. Daniel is rescued and saved from a car crash by Ti Moune and she brought him back to health with the help of the island gods, despite the cautions of her parents and the villagers of the island. Ti Moune loves Daniel and he loves her, but after he is nursed back to health, he informs her that he was already promised to life long family friend, Andrea (Miranda Driewer). The conclusion brings us to Ti Moune’s fate and her part in bringing the generations to come to overcome the division of the island peasants and the French when these people from two different worlds unite and love is found under the tree.
The entire premise of the story is told by the ‘storytellers’ of the island and is in the form of song. The instrumental portion was wonderfully done live by Marilyn and Jay Kroeker, Royce Schweitzer and Ben Coleman, a 2000 Heartland graduate and now drum-line instructor for the Cornhusker Marching Band.
The production was well choreographed (by Kristen Friesen), well-directed and most of all, well performed by the Heartland High School students and 6th grader, Addie Swartzendruber, who played young Ti Moune. The acting and singing was top-notch. Plenty of long, hard-working hours were put into the performance by all involved and the community is thankful for that; it was a joy and a pleasure to watch and partake in. Did you have a chance to see the musical this past weekend? Let us know what you thought by leaving a comment below. Thanks!
Thanks to Cat’s Cradle Photography for providing these great photos! Please contact Tara Swartzendruber to order a photo CD.
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