VIDEO: Port Arthur Little Theatre brings “Grease” to life; check out show dates & cast
Published 12:50 am Saturday, June 12, 2021
Be still your hearts, Rydell High fans: Danny and Sandy are married.
But so are Danny and Rizzo.
At least, in the Port Arthur Little Theatre world.
Rehearsals began this month for the company’s production of “Grease.” And with previous regulations against audience capacity lifted, the theatre group is kicking off summer with a blockbuster hit.
Director Debbie Pletcher recently named two casts — one of adults, one of teens.
The double casting helps in the event of a character’s unavoidable absence, but it also serves another purpose.
“With ‘Grease’ I wanted to do an adult cast and a teen cast because it’s set in high school, but seeing the movie, none of those are high school students,” she said. “Those are adults. And I didn’t want to leave the adults out because everyone loves ‘Grease.’”
It’s a point that’s proven by Addison Hernandez, who drives in from Lumberton for rehearsals. The 17-year-old high school student will play Sandy in the teen production.
“I really love ‘Grease,’” she said. “My mom grew up watching ‘Grease,’ so I’ve always been around it.”
Her adult counterpart is very familiar with the show, returning to the stage for the first time in seven years to be a part of it.
But this time, it’s a family event.
Courtney Austin, of Nederland, has been cast as Sandy. Her husband, Nic Austin, will play Danny. And their 7-year-old daughter, Lorelei, is a part of the ensemble. There was no sign of stage fright as she excitedly danced beside her mother Thursday evening.
“She’s a ham,” Nic said.
Although he’s not quite as comfortable on stage as his daughter, this will be his first stage production since playing the Scarecrow in a high school production of “The Wizard of Oz.”
Port Arthur native Madison Goudeaux, however, has made a home at the building on Jimmy Johnson Boulevard.
“I’ve been here for nine years, so I don’t even know what number production this is,” said the 17-year-old cast as Patty Simcox. “I started with camp. I was really shy and my mom said, ‘You need something to do. You need to talk.’ And now I can’t stop talking.”
“Grease,” directed by Pletcher and assistant director Andrea Eymard, opens July 30 and runs weekends through Aug. 15.
Tickets can be purchased at www.palt.org.
Cast members in order of appearance:
- Miss Lynch: Sarah Howlett, Pam Housley
- Patty Simcox: Madison Goudeaux, Kristen Baker
- Eugene Florczyk: Ethan Foreman, Michael Nash Jr.
- Jan: Peyton Griffin, Lindy Jett
- Marty: Cailey Hardy, Becca Howington
- Betty Rizzo: Kamri Swarers, Rhiannon Pletcher
- Doody: Ivan Chanchavac, Alton Avery II
- Roger: Danny Swarers, Darrien Hunt
- Kenickie: Logan Eymard, Stephen McDowell
- Sonny LaTierri: Logan Williams, Isaac Duerksen
- Frenchy: Angela Baker, Ami Kamara
- Sandy Dumbrowski: Addison Hernandez, Courtney Austin
- Danny Zuko: Rhys Howeth, Nic Austin
- Vince Fontaine: Andy McCall
- Cha-Cha DiGregorio: Kiera Howington, Bethany Thomas
- Teen Angel: Andy McCall
- Ensemble: Andrew Ferrill, Courtney Hutchings, Taylor Bui, Brianna Parent, Josie Zito, Yoseli Gonzalez, Allison Esquivel, Bailee Proctor, Arwen Ewart, Kimberly Landry, Paytlee Picou, Khloe Tanner, Jasmine Murillo, Laura Spencer, Cheyanne Parent, Addison Cruise, Chloe Phillips, Payton Gracee and Ethan Hardy