It’s gonna be beautiful: Heathers preview


Skyline College

With many shows this week, come get your tickets now to see Heathers: The Musical here at Skyline.

For this year’s Spring 2023 musical, Skyline has the opportunity to showcase its version of Heathers: The Musical directed by Gary D. Ferguson. A sneak peek of the show was actually performed on April 12, 2023, in room 6-210 at 12 p.m. In a collaboration between the Spring musical with Personal Counseling and Psychology, attendees not only got a preview of the musical number, “You’re Welcome,” but also experienced a panel discussion with the director, a student performer, the president of Skyline’s club Active Minds, and a Mental Health professional.

There’s a lot to expect from this dark humor driven musical as it captures a lot of uncomfortable topics that many would find hard to address. Nonetheless, this musical does a beautiful job of tackling the bullying culture existent within society. By watching this musical, you’ll see that there’s a lot to unpack within the hierarchy of schools.

The original musical was based on the 1988 movie, Heathers. Adapted into a musical, it has the same structure of the film, but with musical numbers in between of course. It follows Veronica Sawyer, a teenage girl trying to finish her last hellish year of high school so she can move on and go to college. However, her fate is inevitably sealed as there’s no escaping the mean girls of her school, the Heathers. In an attempt to shift the power dynamics, Veronica learns that it’ll take a lot more than becoming the queen bee to change the status quo of her school.

While the theme behind the musical is very relevant to today’s society, this show was originally set in the 80s. Director Gary D. Ferguson felt that a modern twist would really help make the show feel more relatable and overall make it unique from others out there.

“We wanted to make sure that we aren’t shying away. This is what Z’s are really living through,” Ferguson says. “We want to make this about your generation.”

To anyone who’s familiar with the musical, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to see how cohesive they are with the original material and how real it makes the show feel. Madison Schoening, the actor who plays Veronica, comments on her thoughts about the changes.

“I really liked the changes, they were really innovative,” says Schoening. “It adds another layer to the complexities of Heathers.”

And as mentioned, this show has many layers that can be challenging to portray. Anyone exposed to the material at first glance would wince at the various scenes needed to perform. The actors had to surpass their comfort zones in order to successfully connect with their role. Getting the lead role meant exposure to everything, and Schoening says more about what it’s like playing Veronica.

“As Veronica you know, she goes through a lot as you see the transformation she goes through from start to finish,” Schoening says. “Trying to take such difficult topics, to effectively portray this as real things, dissecting the story with the other members is something we all had to do.”

Bonding with your castmates is a must when it comes to musical production. Especially with a show like Heathers, ensuring trust between the cast helps make the environment more comfortable, fun, and safe. Actor Grant Gomez shares this as his role was hard to embody unless he had that trust of his castmates.

“There are parts that are reality. You have to be comfortable with the person you’re working with,” Gomez says. “Creating those relationships and making sure your scene partner is comfortable is important.”

Heathers is a show that’s hard to produce. From the wide range of characters it requires to the vocally challenging songs, it’s a show that needs time and dedication. Based on the preview performed, the cast of this musical seems promising for their eventual debut on Thursday night.

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to watch such a transformative, funny, and relatable musical like Heathers. With showings on Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday this week, honey whatcha you waiting for? Go see Skyline’s production of Heathers.