“Thank you for the music,” Mamma Mia! cast and crew

Ellie Lisiecki, opinion writer

CHS Theatre, directed by Kristen Mickie, recently presented the jukebox musical, Mamma Mia!  at the CPAC. It was a packed house, perhaps due to the weather-related cancellation of their opening night performance. 

Mamma Mia! features an independent owner of a Greek island hotel, Donna Sheidran (senior Katie O’Connor), and her daughter, Sophie (sophomore Sharon Chumlea), preparing for Sophie’s imminent wedding to her fiancé, Sky (junior Gabe Guehrer). Unbeknownst to her mother, Sophie secretly invites three of Donna’s old flings to the island in hopes of finding out which one is her biological father. However, when familiar friends and lovers return, nothing goes as planned.

Sophie’s three possible dads, Harry (senior Jacob Meuler), Bill (senior Logan Jakubowski), and Sam (senior Liam Jakubowski), each had a clear personality and quirks, along with great singing performances in songs such as “Thank You For The Music.” Another key trio in the show was Rosie (senior Sabrina Borg), Tanya (senior Brianna Petersen), and Donna, a.k.a. The Dynamos. Borg and Petersen did great serving as both loyal friends and feisty seducers. A personal favorite scene of mine was while Sophie and Sky sweetly danced to “Lay All Your Love On Me,” Pepper and Eddie (senior Aiden Balajadia and sophomore Keaton Blake) led a procession of flipper-wearing folks on stage, carrying a giant flamingo pool float. The list goes on, but everyone in the cast and the ensemble played and danced their part well, whether it was sincere and heart warming or chaotic and comedic.

To really set the scene, the set had so much detail and depth: a Greek mountaintop village in the distance, a lively taverna and hotel accentuated with string lights, and the jutting dock breaking the fourth wall gave the entire performance an immersive feel. The colorful lighting added another layer of intrigue, especially during psychedelic, chaotic scenes such as “Voulez-Vous” and “Under Attack.” The swirling pinks and greens made for an interesting transition between Act I and Act II. The countless costumes also built on the feel of the show with flashy disco gear and color-coordinated Hawaiian shirts. And of course, without music, what would a musical be? The pit orchestra featuring CHS students performed the numerous ABBA songs spectacularly. 

If the fact that all three performances sold out doesn’t help sell the point that this rendition of Mamma Mia! was terrific, I don’t know what would. Congratulations to those involved for a great experience.