Dr. Seuss characters come to life in annual Oakbrook Musical Extravaganza
Dr. Seuss characters come to life in annual Oakbrook Musical Extravaganza
Posted on 04/19/2018
The entire cast with Mr. Smith and Dr. JohnsMore than Horton Heard a Who recently at Oakbrook Elementary.

The entire community was able to hear Horton’s Who and all the characters from the Dr. Seuss catalog that were brought to life by Oakbrook fifth and sixth graders  at Seussical The Musical – the school’s latest musical extravaganza.

 “I enjoy performing – it’s fun,” said fifth grader McKenzie Johnson, who portrayed the Sour Kangaroo. “You can change yourself into a whole new character.”

Seussical The Musical represents the 11th year music teacher Christopher Smith has put on large productions for the student body and Oakbrook community to enjoy.

“I think it teaches a lot of great life skills,” Smith said.  “Anyone who can get on a stage and sing in front of a large group of people can give a presentation or they can give a job or college entrance interview. It’s building those skills that they can use later in life.”  

Oakbrook musicals are a tradition that promotes opportunities for students to experience the meticulous process of creating a quality stage production – not to mention the confidence building, teamwork and pride go into a job well done. 

Each year, upwards of 60 students take on speaking, singing or dancing roles on stage or equally important roles as members of the backstage and sound crews. 

Beginning with auditions in November, the students’ voluntary commitment totals roughly 100 hours over weeks of giving up recess and staying after school to rehearse.

There is teamwork all around as Stevenson High School drama and art students – many of whom are Oakbrook musical alumni – assist with painting backdrops, applying makeup, running the sound equipment and generally mentoring the elementary students. 

Past performances have included Willy Wonka, The Little Mermaid Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Cinderella, Annie, and Into the Woods.

Smith said his team this year had a strong focus on working together to create a memorable performance. 

“You can tell that they love working together,” he said. 

Fifth Grader Jayden Casas – also known as “Horton” – said being part of the performance was “pretty fun and cool.”

He said: “you get express in a way in a way that you want to."

Cast and Crew with Mr. Smith and Dr. Johns