The Holy Family School Players are proud to present this year's spring musical, "Pippi Longstocking."
The cast consists of 68 thespians in grades one through eight from Nazareth's . The students have been hard at work preparing to take the stage for the first of four shows. Opening night is Friday.
“We’re in the home stretch," said Catherine Little, director of the play.
Pippi will be the eighth performance for the Holy Family School Players. The group began performing spring musicals in 2004.
In the last seven years, the group has performed "The Wizard of Oz" twice, “Cinderella,” “Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory,” “Mary Poppins,” “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” and “Alice in Wonderland."
Little said she chose “Pippi Longstocking” because it's one of her childhood favorites. The story is based on a high-spirited, warm-hearted little girl with strength beyond that of even the circus strongman.
Cast member Milan D’Silva described her this way: “Pippi Longstocking is craziness wrapped in a red bow."
“Pippi resonates with children,” Little said. “She does all of the things kids wish they could do.”
Precocious Pippi lives in a colorful house with a monkey named Mr. Nilssen and a horse. She doesn’t go to school and doesn’t know plutification -- what Pippi calls multiplication -- but she certainly is no dummy. Pippi outwits every adult she meets.
Her father, Captain Longstocking, is a pirate who has been lost at sea, but Pippi believes that he is still alive and will come home someday.
The “bad guy” in the play is Miss Pryssellus, an uppity child welfare worker who wants to put Pippi in a children’s home.
Kristina Spinelli, an eighth grader in her first lead role, plays the part of Pippi. Her background as a cheerleader and member of the school’s Spirit Squad shows through in her portrayal of the high-energy Pippi. Throughout the play, Spinelli mixes in back flips and cartwheels with her big smiles and pigtails.
Fifth graders Gracie Kindt and Maura Muretta play the part of sisters Annika and Gretchen Settergren. The girls are Pippi’s neighbors and become her close friends.
In real life, both Gracie and Maura comment in their cast biographies about how they are best friends and had a lot of fun working on the play together.
Maura stated in the program that “the story of ‘Pippi Longstocking’ means that you shouldn’t be afraid to be yourself. Pippi meets all sorts of people, and she acts like herself in front of every one of them. Just be yourself and believe in yourself and everything will be OK.”
If You Go:
May 13 -- 7 p.m.
May 14 -- 3 p.m. and 7 p.m.
May 15 -- 3 p.m.
The show will be held in the Holy Family School gymnasium at 430 W. Center St., Nazareth. Admission is $5.