Aida, Walt Disney’s animated Egyptian fairytale that never made it to theatres, is brought to life by Lincolnton High’s drama club this weekend at the Citizen’s Center.
Elton John’s musical numbers that will be recreated in the production range from ballads to rock ’n roll, appropriate for the culturally- diverse Lincolnton High students who will be performing them, said Shane Stephens, director of drama activities for LHS.
The story has something for everyone – humor, drama, conflict and tunes that will speak to the audience, Alexis Martinez, 18, promised.
Martinez stars as the captain of the Egyptian army, Radames, who’s in the center of a love triangle, between the one he is supposed to marry, Egyptian Princess Amneris, and Nubian Princess Aida. Radames firsts meets Aida when she is captured along with other Nubian women. Rather than selling her, he assigns Aida to work for his wife-to-be and later falls in love with her.
Although Aida never made it to theatres, it has won an array of awards and was the 34th longest running Broadway show in history.
The love story is popular among high school drama clubs, Stephens thinks, but he doesn’t think any other local school has tried to tackle it, yet. He is excited to show off how diverse LHS and its students are, and hopes the students in the show realize and embrace how important diversity is to the production, he said.
Shanice Street, Aida, didn’t waste any time getting her feet wet after taking an extended break from acting. Street had done some acting when she was young, but decided to take a time-out for a while, until last year when she decided to try her hand in the drama club.
Now, Street has the leading role in a Broadway-famous play – she came back with a splash and her co-actors noticed.
“It’s really exciting to see these kids pour their hearts into something,” said Robin Sites, LHS’ JROTC colonel and Pharaoh in the play.
Sites has been in several of the school’s plays in the past, and was excited to be asked to join the last production of the year.
His character, Pharaoh, is the King of Egypt and father of Princess Amneris, who Radames is supposed to marry. He is duped throughout the play and poisoned, to hasten Radames to the throne, Sites said.
The group has been rehearsing and perfecting their act for the last nine weeks, Street said.
The play will run Friday and Saturday night at 7 p.m., and will wrap up with one last show Sunday at 3 p.m. Tickets are $5 for students and $10 for adults.
“Aida shows the audience that true love never dies,” Sites said.