MENDOTA - As summer draws into its prime, we have much to look forward to: swimming, grilling, the Mendota Sweet Corn Festival, and the infamous MEF musical production.
This year, they are attempting to tackle one of the most acclaimed and longest running musicals on Broadway – “CATS!” With a particularly talented group, Doctor Chris and Stephanie Benson are directing a whole new animal in terms of a musical. The nature of this musical stems not only around the singers and actors but heavily on dancers as well, which has pulled in some 3M veterans, along with new talent from the surrounding area.
For cast members Molly Gustafson (Jemima), Sophie Smigel (Victoria), Gillian Sondgeroth (Tantomile), Nikki Rybarczyk (Coricopat), Keenan Ellis (Macavity/Admetus) and Cody Batcher (Alonzo) - to name a few - the promise of challenging dances and intriguing characters pulled them in this year. “CATS” has also drawn individuals such as Fabian Gomez (Mr. Mistoffelees) who, while familiar to Mendota, is new to summer stock.
Although new names are being added to the list of talented performers who waltz the stage of Mendota High School, there are those who have been in these shows for longer than cats have had whiskers. They include Raleigh Shifflette (Bustopher Jones), Payton Gehm (Asparagus), Dekin Walter (Bill Bailey/Rumpus Cat), Samantha Masini (Bombalurina), Patrick Foley (Carbucketty), Melissa Wohrley (Demeter), Abby Hasslau (Electra), Katherine Wohrley (Etcetera), Anna Roseland (Exotica), Jennifer Billingsley (Grizabella), Bethany Wohrley (Jellylorum), Jennifer Masini (Jennyanydots), Brady Hughes (Munglejerrie), Eric Masini (Munkustrap), Nate Bradford (Old Deuteronomy), Matt Grenter (Plato), Julie Lee (Cassandra), Brook Lee (Sillibub), Cole Enervold (Skimbleshanks), Jacob Stohr (Victor) and Heather Zell (Rumpleteazer).
The cast is excited and proud to present “CATS” the purrrr-fect musical, coming to audiences at the Mendota High School Auditorium on Friday, Aug. 4 and Saturday, Aug. 5 at 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, Aug. 6 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $15 and may be purchased at Sports n Stuff, downtown Mendota or call (815) 539-6354.