NPC presents Shrek the Musical

The cast of Shrek the Musical has been rehearsing in preparation for the Nov. 28-30 run. (GREG VANDERMEULEN/Winkler Times)

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Northlands Parkway Collegiate will present Shrek The Musical Nov. 28-30 at the P.W. Enns Centennial Concert Hall in Winkler.

The high school students are working hard on the finishing touches and are excited to present the heart warming story.

Based on the hit film, Shrek the Musical is a Tony Award-winning stage musical that has swept the world with its magic. “Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek…”  And thus begins the fairy tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking Donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue.  Throw in a short tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you’ve got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero.  Luckily, there’s one on hand…and his name is Shrek.

Director Angela Klassen  said they selected Shrek the Musical after considering what would work well with the student actors.

“It’s a really good story about the importance of friendship and liking people for who they are,” she said. “It’s really what’s inside that counts.”

The production is a challenge for the actors as well. “There’s very few students who are actually playing human roles here so they have to figure out how do I now portray this animal or fairy tale character,” she said.

But preparing for the event has been fun.

“It’s amazing,” she said. “We have a really, really strong group of students. I have fun coming here and watching them every day.”

Mikaela Wiebe plays a young Fiona and one of the three little pigs.

“She’s ignorant, as all little children usually are,” she said of the young Fiona. “She’s very hopeful that she’s going to get out of that tower.”

Playing one of the pigs is also a challenge.

“You really have to get into the role to make people believe you are one of the pigs,” she said.

While Shrek the Musical is humorous and fun, Wiebe hopes the audience leaves with a message.

“Don’t judge people before you get to know them,” she said. “What’s on the outside doesn’t really matter… it’s what’s on the inside that matters most.”

Cheyenne Wiebe plays Fiona and the Fairy Godmother.

She said her character, the older version of Fiona goes through a variety of emotions.

“Fiona has been sitting in a tower for 20 years of her life and she is bored out of her mind and waiting on her true love to come rescue her,” she said. “When he finally does, she’s a little bit in shock, disbelief and because she hasn’t had human contact in so long she’s a little confused as how to act around other people and/or creatures.”

Wiebe said she gets more out of the Shrek story than ever before.

“Now that we’re older, Shrek has a lot of jokes in there that we didn’t really understand as kids,” she said. “Now we do, so now it’s actually funnier.”

She enjoys the work it takes to become ready for the opening day. “I wanted to be part of something fun and uplifting for my Grade 12 year,” she said.

Levi Zacharias plays Shrek himself, and said it is a challenge.

“I have to work on a really short temper to play Shrek properly, which doesn’t come very naturally,” he said. “I guess I’m getting better at it rather quickly, which is concerning.”

Zacharias said Shrek has to cope with uncomfortable situations.

“He can’t really handle so many people, but he’s put in too many situations where he just has too,” he said.

There’s no character he’d rather play.

“Shrek was my idol growing up,” he said. “Being able to play him is super awesome.”

Shrek the Musical takes place Nov. 28-30, at 7:30 p.m. at the P.W. Enns Centennial Concert Hall.

Tickets cost $10 and can be purchased at the concert hall website, Winkler City Hall, at Northlands Parkway Collegiate, or at the door if still available.

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