“The Nifty Fifties” takes stage April 27-28

Lakeside Lutheran High School is nearing its final week of practice for the spring production of the comedy musical “The Nifty Fifties” on Friday and Saturday, April 27-28.


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The cast nears the end of rehearsals for the Lakeside Lutheran spring comedy musical “The Nifty Fifties.” Performances are set for 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday, April 27-28.


In this musical comedy that will have audiences cheering, Gracie Stanley (played by senior Maria Werre, Sun Prairie) has gotten herself in hot water by promising to deliver her distant cousin, rockstar Ziggy Springer (senior Charlie Pingel, Sun Prairie), for the high school Hippity Hop at Louise’s Luncheonette. Ziggy’s manager, Lennie, (junior Justin Learned, Watertown) doesn’t want his client performing anywhere without pay, so Gracie and her friends have to produce a double and fast! They use a singing soda jerk (senior Isaiah Coleman, Watertown) and plan to have him perform in the dark! It won’t be easy for Gracie to get away with this one with her rival, snooty Muffin Mansfield (sophomore Abbie DiGiovanni, Jefferson), waiting for her to flop.

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The “mean girls” spar off against the “good girls” in a rehearsal for “The Nifty Fifties.”

Meanwhile, diner manager Louise (junior Samantha Anderson, Sun Prairie) has her own problems. The building’s owner forbids the dance and plans to turn the eatery into a dry cleaner. With all of this happening, Gracie’s brother (senior Andrew Burk, Johnson Creek) is living in terror because he’s smashed up a Harley belonging to Sinbad Gallucci (junior Lucas Schneider, Waterloo), a bad dude.

Will Gracie be able to keep her promise or will she fall flat on her face? Come back to the fifties and see for yourself!

Other 1950s characters include diner waitresses Virginia (junior Sophie Griffin, Madison) and Edna (senior Emily Raymond, Sun Prairie); Muffin’s mean posse Ann (sophomore Anna Bilitz, Madison) and Jane (junior Molly Lindloff, Lake Mills); Gracie’s goodie girlfriends Rose Marie Famiano (senior Emma Guld, Lake Mills) and Evelyn (junior Olivia Fregien, Madison); the nerd Jughead (senior Aaron Natvig, Cottage Grove); teen hunk George (junior Al Wood, Madison); beatniks Riff (junior Ben Huebner, Madison) and Misty (freshman Ella Butzine, Oconomowoc); Lennie’s secretary, Beverly (senior Alyson Steffan, Lake Mills); and Officer Moore (sophomore Bronte Perkins, Madison) and Mrs. Nicholson (junior Maddie Klug, Ixonia). A female chorus rounds out the cast that includes senior Gabby Grunewald (Bettendorf, IA), junior Kira Tweit (Madison), sophomore Kendra Kasper (Helenville) and sophomore Hannah Koenig (Cambridge).

The production is directed by Pastors Clark Schultz and Mark Toepel, with choreography by Becca Lauber, musical talent management by Jim Buege and Brian Schmidt, and costuming by Sandra Corlett. Mr. Damon Tracy heads up a crew of student for lights and sound. Students from TechEd, under Mr. Jeff Meske, built the staging, and art students painted, directed by Mrs. Lori Tetzlaff. Student stage managers are junior Rachel Poyner (Madison) and Kristina Meinel The Nifty Fifties is presented by special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service, Inc.

The show will be at 7 p.m. each night. Reserved floors seats are available for $8. Advance Tickets are available online at www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3375667 or by calling 1-800-838-3006. Walk-up unreserved bleacher seats will be $5 both nights.


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The cast rehearses one of the full cast musical selections in preparation for the Lakeside Lutheran spring comedy musical “The Nifty Fifties,” onstage at campus April 27-28.


Student musicians receive recognition

The Lakeside Lutheran Music Department, led by Choir Director James Buege and Band Director Glen Pufahl, presented music awards for the 2016-2017 academic year to several student musicians at Academic Awards Night at Lakeside Lutheran High School.


Winning music awards recently at Lakeside Lutheran in Lake Mills were (back row, l-r) J Doyle, Luke Willems, Maddie McKenna, (middle) Mindy Meske, Derek Gulrud, Jamee Wohling, Tina Kehl, Hannah Mayer. (front) Ashley Fritz, Joe Grambsch, Cara McElroy. (not pictured) Matthias Winters, Bethany Mahnke, Adam Peters.


The National School Choral Award® is the highest honor for high school choral performers. It recognizes the dedication and musical achievement of top choral students nationwide, and was awarded to senior Derek Gulrud, daughter of Cody and Nidia Gulrud of Marshall. A Gueldner Music Clinic scholarship was awarded to junior vocalist Hannah Mayer, daughter of Dale and Sandra Mayer of Fort Atkinson.

Four A Cappella Choir seniors received Outstanding Vocalist awards: Luke Willems, son of Drew and Heidi Willems, Johnson Creek; Cara McElroy, daughter of Stewart and Robin McElroy, Madison; Mindy Meske, daughter of Jeff and Jayne Meske, Jefferson, and Maddie McKenna, daughter of Sam and Missy McKenna, Lake Mills. Two received Senior Accompanist awards: Bethany Mahnke, daughter of Mike and Latonia Mahnke, Sun Prairie, and Jamee Wohling, daughter of Scott and Dawn Wohling of Beaver Dam. Adam Peters, son of Jeff and Pam Peters, Watertown, was recognized for perfect attendance in more than 40 events over his two-year A Cappella tenure.

Outstanding Musicians are chosen by fellow band members in recognition for outstanding musical achievements, cooperation, and dedication to the Lakeside Lutheran band program. 2017 recipients include Ashley Fritz, daughter of Brian and Tiffany Fritz, Middleton; Jamee Wohling; J Doyle, son of Jack and Julie Doyle, DeForest; Luke Willems; Cara McElroy; Joseph Grambsch, son of Chad and Rachel Grambsch, Columbus; Tina Kehl, daughter of Paul and Kristine Kehl, Waterloo; and Matthias Winters, son of Jim and Kimara Winters, Watertown.

The Louis Armstrong Jazz Award® was inaugurated in 1974 with the consent of his widow shortly after this great jazz artist died in 1971. It honors the outstanding jazz musician at each high school nationwide; this year’s award was presented to Joseph Grambsch. The Woody Herman Jazz Award® was created in 1988, shortly after Herman’s death, also to honor outstanding jazz students, and was given to Ashley Fritz.

Said to be the most prestigious band award given to a high school band member, the John Philip Sousa Band Award is given to recognize superior musicianship, dependability, loyalty, and cooperation, and was awarded to Jamee Wohling.

Lakeside Lutheran to present spring musical

Lakeside Lutheran High School is nearing its final week of practice for the spring production of the comedy musical Princess Whatsername. Performances are scheduled for Friday and Saturday, April 29 and 30 at 7 p.m. Tickets may be reserved in advance by calling the school office at (920) 648-2321, or purchasing tickets at the door the nights of the performances. Prices are $8 for adults and $5 for students (K-12).

It begins in the Misty Forest, where a girl is sleeping. When she wakes, nothing looks familiar to her. She can’t remember anything — not where she’s from, how she got there or even her own name! She embarks on a journey to discover her identity and meets several fairy-tale characters along the way. Some are helpful, some are dangerous, and some are just plain weird, but all have information to help our young girl eventually realize her true identity as a princess. As with any good fairytale, there’s also a prince! He’s desperate to find the princess, but he’s always one step behind and inadvertently rescues and wins the hearts of all the wrong princesses! A rocking musical score adds even more fun to new takes on the stories everyone loves.

A large cast offers the opportunity for many Lakeside students to showcase their acting and musical talents. Characters include the fairytale legends Gretel (Mindy Meske, Jefferson); Hansel (Malachi Mortenson, Beaver Dam), Rumpelstiltskin (Kyle Burger, Lake Mills), Cinderella (Lillie Johnstone, Jefferson), Rapunzel (Emma Guld, Lake Mills), the Forest Witch (Audra Sonntag, Janesville), and fairies, both good (Jordan Gade, Lake Mills, Marilyn Klein, Watertown and Sophia Griffin, Madison), evil (Violet Dumke, Fort Atkinson) and the godmother (Sam Anderson, Sun Prairie).

Princess Whatsername rehearsal with Princess, Goldilocks and Snow White at Lakeside Lutheran
Lakeside Lutheran students (from left) Madeline McKenna (Goldilocks), Jade Wood (Snow White) and Maria Werre (Princess) rehearse a scene while director Toepel follows along.

Other fairytale characters include Snow White (Jade Wood, Madison) and her seven dwarfs, Giddy (Olivia Fregien, Madison); Nosy (Ben Huebner, Madison); Rowdy (Al Wood, Madison); Whiny (Gabby Grunewald, Bettendorf, IA); Hippie (Mollie Lindloff, Janesville); Guilty (Corey Paske, Arlington); and Flighty (Maddie Klug, Juneau). Likewise, Goldilocks (Madeline McKenna, Lake Mills) and a big and little bear make an appearance (Mark Hoeft, Fort Atkinson and Colton Hatcher, Oconomowoc).

In addition to the title namesake Princess (Maria Werre, Sun Prairie), the cast also features several other royalty, including the Queen of North (Heidi Skewes, Madison), King and Queen of the South (Josiah Eaker, Keyera Giese, both of Watertown), Queen of the West (Emily Weber, Helenville), and Princes Hercules (Josh Schoenfeld, Lake Mills), Reveille (Derek Gulrud, Marshall), Adonis (Joe Graumann, Fort Atkinson) and Swavay (Mason DeNoyer, Sun Prairie).

Rounding out the royalty staff are the Herald (Caleb Strutz, Verona), the Steward (Lucas Schneider, Waterloo) and the Nurse (Noah Kooiman, Lake Mills).

Princess Whatsername rehearsal at LLHS
Lakeside Lutheran students (from left) Derek Gulrud (Prince Reveille), Malachi Mortenson (Hansel) and Mindy Meske (Gretel) hunt for the Princess while director Schultz reads along.

The Lakeside Lutheran drama team is directed by teachers Clark Schultz and Mark Toepel. Choreography is provided by Lake Mills dance instructor Rebecca Lauber. Musical coaching is provided by Lakeside Lutheran choral director James Buege and Rachel Mortensen. Student stage manager is Annika Butzow of Janesville. Princess Whatsername is presented by special arrangement with Pioneer Drama Service, Inc.