One of the massive highlights of the school year is the three night run of the Transition Year musical. A dedicated team of St. Fintan’s teachers lead a group of our lads, and girls from Santa Sabina, through their routines over the course of the year and audiences always revel in the professionalism of the show. Over the years shows have ranged from Les Miserables to Tommy, Sweeney Todd to A Midsummer Night’s dream, not to mention the Award-Winning Avenue Q and right up to this year’s staging of Grease. Below is a student account of this year’s musical.
In collaboration with Santa Sabina Dominican College, Saint Fintan’s managed to pull off one of the greatest and biggest musicals of all time... Grease. This year’s musical had the largest cast of TYs St. Fintan’s students performing, with a total of 17 leads and over 75 chorus members. The musical was performed on the 8th, 9th and 10th of March 2018.
The main plot is about Danny Zuko (Cian Mulligan), leader of the greaser gang the "T-Birds" of Rydell High, who falls in love with a goody-two-shoes girl named Sandy Drumbowski (Hannah Killeen) over the summer. They thought she'd be leaving and would never see each other again. However, it turns out that Sandy begins to attend Danny’s school, Rydell High, in California. She is immediately accepted into the group "Pink Ladies" and shortly Danny and Sandy are reacquainted. Danny seems to have changed but, in the hopes of winning Sandy back, he changes into the loving Danny Zuko that Sandy met during the summer. Grease leads us through the friendships, romances and adventures of a group of high school kids in the 1950s; we get to know completely different characters like: Kenickie (Dario Regazzi), the rough second in command of the T-Birds and obsessed with his hunk-a-junk car “Greased Lightnin’” and Rizzo (Katie Sheridan), the leader of the pink ladies trying to overcome the reality of her devious past and Doody (Dylan Duffy), the musical one of the TBirds who is completely in love with the guitar, and of course Frenchy (Rebecca Nolan), a teenage girl with a lot of inner-conflict whether to drop Beauty School and go back to high school and many more. Grease was filled with many famous songs such as “Hopelessly Devoted to You”, “Summer Nights”, “Greased Lightnin’”, “Beauty School Drop Out” and “Born to Hand Jive”, the list is never ending!
As shocking as this may seem, auditions for the musical began in September, with over 100 boys from St. Fintan’s and over 90 students from Santa Sabina auditioning and only 4 teachers in the audition room. The leads were already picked by early October! Practice began straight away. From October- December everyone had to know all the lyrics of all 15 songs off by heart. Behind The Scenes Actors in the musical had to learn off all their lines with an American Accent which was hard for some actors, having over 80 lines! The Art Department had to buy and make hundreds of props in great detail like: ice creams, burgers and of course… the car ‘Greased Lightnin’. The Assistant Directors, with help with PH Sound Systems used over 80 lights, 18 microphones and 13 speakers every single night of the show.
The Costume Team bought and prepared over 100 costumes which they had to organise every single day! Also for over 6 weeks the TYs got professional choreography classes from a choreographer to organise all the dances in the Prom Scene. During practice, of course there were many problems and fails e.g someone falling through the bleacher steps for the dance ‘Summer Nights’ and many props being broken...oops! But yet with all of these shocking facts, the TYs managed to perform according to many teachers, students and past pupils the best musical the school has ever done… The TY cast and crew managed to have an incredible experience filled with fun and joy and it is an experience they will never forget and the biggest highlight of their time in Santa Sabina and St.Fintans.