Picture7By Judy Garrison

The school’s Spring musical, “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory”,   based on Roald Dahl’s book, couldn’t have been a more perfect theatrical vehicle for the ACS Drama Club (We felt the same way about “Oliver.”) It offered roles for the full span of ages; chances to show off acting, singing, comedic and acrobatic talent; and an opportunity for displaying wonderful sets, costumes and dance numbers. And succeeded beautifully on all counts.

Noah Dougherty as Willy Wonka (did he actually closely resemble Gene Wilder in that same role in the 1971 movie version, or am I dreaming?)Picture8had the insouciance emblematic of the character down pat. Jay Camuti (who plays Charlie and was also the young Oliver) charmed with every movement, phrase and song, worthy of a focal character out of this huge cast where all of the many roles were vividly and memorably portrayed. In playing a young boy who wins a tour through the most magnificent chocolate factory in the world, he succeeds in projecting a vulnerability that keeps the audience rooting for him.Picture9

The duos stood out, too:  Jessica Ruppert and Matthew Ruppert as Mrs. Gloop and Augustus Gloop; Winnie Richards-Consigny and Mathias Majallali as Veruca Salt and Mr. Salt; Alexis Redden and Allison Long as Violet Beauregarde and Mrs. Beauregarde; Montana Damone and Henry Polen as Mrs. Teavee and Mike Teavee. In truth, every last Oompa-Loompa, Bucket, Candy Man and Candy Kid had our heart.~