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Valhalla HS Puts on 'Little Shop of Horrors'

VALHALLA, N.Y. – The Valhalla High School Drama Society held the last dress rehearsal for its spring production of “Little Shop of Horrors” Thursday night and is set to perform the musical comedy Friday and Saturday night at 7 p.m. with a Saturday matinee at 1 p.m.

The play, by composer Alan Menken and writer Howard Ashman, stars senior James Fulgenzi as Seymour – the skid row flower shop worker who raises a plant that feeds on human blood – and junior Kelli Whitman, who plays Audrey his love interest whom he names the plant after. High school principal Jon Thomas plays the plant, Audrey II.

Bill Mentz has directed Valhalla musicals for six years.  He said this year’s show was special because in most productions, “there’s an internal drama within the drama but there was none of that this year. They’re a happy group of kids.”

Fulgenzi, who’s been acting since sixth grade, said Seymour “is an interesting character, timid and shy, unlike me.” He enjoys being a senior performer who can help the younger actors. “It’s great working with ninth graders who haven’t done it before and see how excited they get,” he said.

Whitman plays Audrey, “the clumsy blonde who falls for the wrong guy before she meets Seymour,” she said. She said the cast “all got along so well” and she worked well with Mentz. “If I wanted to try something different we discussed different ways of doing it to get the best out of the scene,” she said.

Thomas was happy to play Audrey II off stage. “I enjoy the show without having to worry about makeup and costumes,” he said.

“It’s great performing with students who allow me to be part of their world. It gives them and me the opportunity to see a different side of each other,” he said.

Tickets for the performances are $10 for students and seniors, $12 for adults and a free Saturday matinee for seniors, with lunch included.

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