Tuesday, October 5, 2010

"Controversial Genius: Kathleen Hill"

WOLFEBORO - Center Harbor’s Kathleen Hill is a busy woman. You can tell by reading her status updates on Facebook.

She is the curriculum coordinator for the Inter-Lakes School District. (Status update: “In another meeting.”) She is Mom to a 13-year-old daughter who has gymnastics and dance almost every day. (Status update: “Back handsprings on beam still scary to watch.”) At Inter-Lakes, she directs the Middle Tier students in their annual fall and spring plays. (Status update: “Oh, to be in the head of a 6th grade boy!”)

To put it mildly, Kathleen Hill has a lot of demands on her time. But without fail, twice a week she has a Facebook status update like this: “Fantastic Cinderella rehearsal!!”

Hill is the director of The Village Players fall musical, Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella. This year’s show, which opens on Friday, November 12, has a lot to be excited about.

Her cast may not be paid, but they are professional, through and through. Hill was thrilled with the talent she saw at auditions, but the rehearsal process has uncovered another priceless side to these performers. Her 32 cast members are committed to learning and perfecting their dialogue, blocking, lyrics, harmonies and dances. With each rehearsal, Hill can see great leaps in how their performances are coming together.

But, the people performing on stage are just a piece of the show. This musical fairy tale requires plenty of magical moments that will be orchestrated behind-the-scenes. Hill has surrounded herself with a gifted production team to act as back stage Fairy Godmothers. She has a good attitude about the impossible moments they have to create. “The whole transformation scene is a challenge. How do you turn mice into horses, a pumpkin into a coach and a scullery maid into a princess? Very carefully!” Hill laughs. “Luckily, we have a very talented set and stage crew…Wait until you see the pumpkin coach!”

When all of this comes together in mid-November, what does Kathleen Hill hope her audiences will think? “I would like every little boy and girl who sees Cinderella to leave the theater believing magic really happened on our stage. I would like every adult transported back to his/her childhood when they still believed, ‘Impossible things are happening every day!’”

You children, Hill adds, can also be part of the show. Boys and girls who attend the show are encouraged to dress in their most royal attire and participate in a Prince and Princess Parade during intermission.

The Village Players production of Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella is November November 12, 13, 14, 19, 20 and 21. The curtain rises Fridays and Saturdays at 8pm and Saturday (20th only) and Sundays at 2pm. For more information go to www.village-players.com.