The Bat Prepares to Spring

A talented cast has worked for months to bring "Bat Boy: The Musical" to the La Canada High School stage.

Inspired by fabricated reports in a tabloid newspaper, playwrights Keythe Farley and Brian Flemming have intertwined outrageous comedy and an unlikely love story with Laurence O'Keefe's entertaining rock score to create a musical with a moving message.

The story is set in a small town where three teens discover a beastly boy with pointy ears in a West Virginia cave and take him into town for veterinary care. The vet's wife, Meredith, and daughter, Shelley, insist on adopting the Bat Boy and patiently begin to teach him manners and speech. Once refined, Bat Boy, named Edgar, yearns to be accepted as he struggles to suppress his animal nature and become part of the community. But in the sleepy town of Hope Falls, where the coal mines have closed and the cattle are dying mysteriously, Bat Boy is blamed for the town's troubles.

Gale Caswell, retiring after 12 years of building LCHS's well-respected drama department, directs this unforgettable musical comedy. Lori Marie Rios provides choral direction for the outstanding and challenging rock vocals, and Kerry Rupe choreographs the eclectic, high-energy dance numbers.

Set designer Scott Heineman, a long-time volunteer, has created a unique atmosphere never before seen on the LCHS stage. "This set is the perfect canvas for the story of Bat Boy as we are telling it," said Caswell, with high praise for Heineman's extraordinary designs.

A dedicated crew of volunteers has put in countless hours behind the scenes to make sure the students on stage will present an outstanding production.

"Almost half of our adult volunteers are people who don't have a student currently in the cast of the production," said Caswell.

Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. June 2 to 4, and 2 p.m. on June 5. Reserved seating is $15. Balcony seating is $10. Will call orders must be paid in advance. For orders or information call, Barb Barber at 790-1314. Tickets can also be purchased at the LCHS auditorium box office from noon to 12:45 p.m. daily.

The original text has been tastefully modified, making the material appropriate for family viewing. However, the show may not be suitable for some children under the age of 13. Parental discretion is advised.

Lisa Stones is a member of Friends of Drama at La Cañada High School.

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