Students take on roles as choreographers in musical

Musical director chooses two students to lead the choreography for the school’s musical, “Oklahoma!”


By Nick Precht

Student choreographers, Alison Booth and Caroline Gambill rehearse their songs for the musical.

Sam Lopez, JagWire news editor

Sophomores Alison Booth and Caroline Gambill will choreograph the school’s upcoming musical, “Oklahoma!”

Musical director Jon Copeland chose Booth and Gambill due to their previous dancing experience and the departure of last year’s student choreographer, 2015 graduate Libby Brennaman, as well as hired choreographer Sarah Peterson.

“I knew they had good dancing abilities. They knew the skills that were involved, not just that they could dance well,” Copeland said. “I said, ‘Here’s sixteen bars, bring this back in.’ And what they did was great.”

Despite the challenge of choreographing dances, Booth said she enjoyed the experience.

“We did the advanced audition dance and it was really fun,” Booth said. “It wasn’t as hard as we thought it would be.”

Booth and Gambill then have to demonstrate the dances for the other students.

“We just get together and choreograph dances to music that Copeland has given us,” Gambill said. “Then we practice it, and we have to figure out how we’re going to teach it to everyone else.”

Copeland, however, did not doubt Booth and Gambill’s ability to lead their peers.

“I let them actually teach their segment at the dance auditions, and they did a great job teaching the people that were in their group. It looked great, and they did a good job,” Copeland said. “Sometimes it’s more difficult if you’re working with your peers to do that. I don’t foresee that being an issue because they both have that positive leader personality.”

Although, Booth was initially worried about instructing other students.

“I thought it was going to be awkward, especially teaching [upperclassmen],” Booth said. “But, since we’re friends with a lot of the people we’re teaching it to, it wasn’t awkward.”

Gambill is looking forward to having a big impact in the musical as a choreographer.

“Being a sophomore, you [usually] can’t get a very big role in the musical,” Gambill said. “Choreographing is fun, and it helps us stay involved.”

Booth is also excited to see her dances take life on stage.

“I’m definitely looking forward to seeing [the dances],” Booth said. “I’ve never choreographed something and watched other people perform it.”

Correction: An earlier version of this post included incorrect information. Last year’s student cheoreographer was Libby Brennaman, not Libbey DeWitte.

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