McAuley High School portrayed the underbelly of 19th century London in the musical Oliver! by Lionel Bart, derived from the classic Dickens novel Oliver Twist.
Oliver (Mandy Gardner) is lifted by the chorus during the "Consider Yourself" number. McAuley High School staged Oliver! at its campus in College Hill.
The Cincinnati Enquirer/TONY JONES
The title character was played by Mandy Gardner with the proper mixture of shyness and spunk. She maintained a sense of discovery the entire musical, even as she was kicked around by adults in her life.
Playing Fagin, Clare Hingsbergen captured the audience, with a creepy and dynamic character. A devilish energy lit her face as her mature vocals intrigued the audience. Hingsbergen made the show her own, carrying musical numbers like "Pick a Pocket or Two" and drawing belly laughs during her solo, "Reviewing the Situation."
Another evil adult in Oliver's life, Bill Sykes, was played by Mark Scherer. He menaced as a cold-hearted man who ends up committing murder. Scherer took control of every situation with sharp, definitive actions. As a dancer featured in "Consider Yourself," Scherer spun like a pro, pulling off 11 straight-leg fuettes.
Jessi Corsmeier shined as the Artful Dodger. She gave an energetic performance, combining smooth dancing with clear vocals and comic expressions. Jason Eckoff displayed comedic talent as Oliver's nasty first owner, Mr. Bumble. He struck comic poses and played up his relationship with Widow Corney (Marie Schuster).
The cast of McAuley's Oliver! came together when singing chorale numbers, their voices blending and ringing out into the house. The cast worked through any sound difficulties to deliver a wholly satisfying experience.
Jeff Lynch, Cincinnati Country Day School
Adopting a believable English accent, Clare Hingsbergen stole the stage with unmatched character depth and honest acting.
Jenny Linger, Lakota West High School
Jessi Corsmeier as The Artful Dodger had noticeable chemistry with all the other actors, bringing the show together. She dazzled the audience with her dance skills in "Consider Yourself" and showed a sweeter, more compassionate, side to her character in "I'd Do Anything."
Emily Castle, Campbell County High School
Mr. and Mrs. Sowerberry (Anson Krekler and Erica Chubb) chilled viewers with "That's Your Funeral," and Nancy, played by Kristin Matthews, brought out emotional appeal in "As Long As He Needs Me."
Anna Harvey, Taylor High School
One of the most striking moments of the performance came with Act II's "Who Will Buy," with various street vendors calling for business in clear, sweet voices. Rachel Bomkamp, Stacey Hauser, Michelle Lachmann, and Jennifer Roeding held composure through the piece.
Kristin Conrad, Turpin High School
The Greater Cincinnati chapter of Cappies, or Critics and Awards Program, is in its third season, with students writing reviews of other high schools' productions. Today, McAuley High School's "Oliver ." For more information and show schedules, see www.cappies.com
Tasers have fans, doubters
Cicada noise will provide extra trills
Lawsuit against Cinergy expands
Busken cupcake on eBay
Photo gallery: Images of Good Friday
IN THE TRISTATE
Ex-officer charged in wife's death
McAuley puts on 'Oliver!' with flair
Fairfield sues to close Capri Motel
TV show: Blacks ticketed more
Polar bear dies at zoo
DeWine, Dowlin spent $669,609 in battle
Alleged assault caught on tape
Hamilton plans for future roads
Concerns over trees delaying repair
New homes stir debate
Tenant brings hope
Excess zinc discharge may bring $56,000 fine
Recount to Niehaus in Senate primary
License plates could feature Reds logo
Trustee urged to resign
Public safety briefs
Good Things Happening
Impact of film may lie in faith
Joseph Hetzer, plant executive
Some pot can be evidence, some not
No funding for church cause
Budget talks hit a wall in Frankfort
Fletcher aide gets support of GOP
Historic pipe organ back for Easter
Prom-goers get 'don't' list