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(From left) Dan Lotter, Phillip Kisamore and Danny Sylvester rehearse a scene from "Guys & Dolls," Jonathan Alder High School’s spring musical. The young men play gamblers Nicely, Nicely Johnson, Benny Southstreet and Nathan Detroit, respectively.
 
 Scene rehearsal.

Virtue and vice are juxtaposed in the lively musical, "Guys & Dolls," Jonathan Alder High School’s choice for its spring musical.

Gamblers and Save-A-Soul mission workers will share the stage in four performances over April 3-6. Director Ann Gorman can’t wait for the curtain to go up.

"I’ve wanted to do this show for all of the nine years I’ve been here, and finally, I have this powerhouse section of men to pull it off," Gorman said.

Among the guys in the 48-member cast are seniors Shawn Yoder and Dan Lotter, who have come a long way since their first forays into drama four years ago.

"When Shawn was a freshman, he was backstage for ‘The Music Man.’ I tried to get him out front, but he just wanted to move scenery," Gorman said.

"But I saw how much fun the group was having and I decided I wanted to be a part of it," Yoder said. The next year, he landed a part as a waiter in "Hello Dolly" followed by a spot in the Hog Owners quartet in "State Fair" his junior year. This year, he’s a gambler and an understudy for all of the male roles.

Just like Yoder, Lotter started his stage career tentatively.

"My freshman year, I was kind of embarrassed about singing, but people encouraged me to do it. I got to be the baritone in ‘The Music Man’ quartet," said Lotter, who ran light and sound for "Hello Dolly" his sophomore year, played the lead in last year’s "State Fair," and for "Guys & Dolls" plays gambler Nicely Nicely Johnson.

"I like my part this year because there’s a lot more singing," said Lotter, who has been known to make up lines when the speaking parts come along. "The other nice thing is that I didn’t have to change the way I talk much because my family is from the East Coast."

The lead roles in "Guys & Dolls" belong to David Smith, who plays the bet-on-anything Sky Mas-terson to Eliza Graber’s straight-laced mission work-er, Sarah Brown. Danny Sylvester plays Nathan De-troit, organizer of an illegal floating crap game, who has been engaged for 14 years to nightclub singer Miss Adelaide, played by Cassie Wurschmidt.

Adelaide’s profession provides the backdrop for some of the show’s dance scenes featuring the "Hotbox Girls." The group’s dozen dancers are played by Cassidy Brauner, Carrie Bumgarner, Krystan Hagenbirk, Marian Hobson, Shannon Miller, Elisa Powers, Megan Renner, Kristin Shultz, Katlyn Sullivan, Haley Sutton, Victoria Troyer and Alyssa Thomas.

The dances aren’t the only scenes that are choreographed. So is a fight scene set in Havana, Cuba. All of it makes for an action-packed production.

"It’s a great show with great music, and it’s funny," Gorman said.

Among the most well-known songs are "Luck Be A Lady" and "Bushel and a Peck."

"This is a very dedicated cast. They have been working hard," continued Gorman, who squeezed in two rehearsals on March 24, the last day of spring break, to make up for time lost due to snow days. Of the 11 weeks the director set aside for rehearsals, one week was lost to calamity days.

 
 The Hotbox Girls practice a dance routine.
 
Cassie Wurschmidt (center), who plays nightclub singer Miss Adelaide in Jonathan Alder’s production of "Guys & Dolls," rehearses a number with her fellow "Hotbox Girls."

The cast hasn’t skipped a beat. In addition to those already mentioned, the group includes: Tom Kellett as Rusty Charlie, Brandon Rohrig as Harry the House, Alex Disbennett as The Greek, Dane Baldwin as Scranton Slim, Stephen Lamb as Society Max, Josh Lamb as Liver Lips Louis, Jared Ayres as Angie the Ox, Caleb Thompson as Big Jule, Noah Ramage as Arvide Abernathy, Erika Thomas as Agatha, David Yoder as Lt. Brannigan, Mallory Skaggs as Gen. Cartwright, and Joe Hochstetler as a waiter.

Playing parts in the Mission Band are Rachel Blum, Ben Graber, Alex Kronk, Devin Larkin, Meghan McLoughlin, Liz Novak and P.J. Peters.

Additional townspeople are played by Ally Brickner, Skylar Clay, Tori Ellis, Jeanette Gingerich, Kayla Green, Alexis Grossholz, Jessica McNamee, Jill Needham and Charlotte Peterson.

Scott Jones is the choreographer.

Show Times & Ticket Prices

Jonathan Alder High School will present "Guys & Dolls" April 3-6. For tickets or information, call 614-873-4642.

Thursday, April 3: Dinner at 7 p.m. Show at 8 p.m. Tickets for dinner and the show are $25 for adults and $22 for children 10 and under.

Friday, April 4 and Saturday, April 5: Show at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults and $7 for children.

Sunday, April 6: Show at 3 p.m. All tickets are $7.

Tickets may be purchased from any cast member or in the high school lobby between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 and 9 p.m. Wednesday.

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