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Ely’s “Year of Frozen” reaches climax

Michael Rouse gives the production of Disney’s Frozen a pep talk before their rehearsal after school. Photos by Parker Loew.

A project more than a year in the making comes to fruition next weekend with Ely High School’s presentation of the classic Disney musical Frozen.

While a musical is part of the high school arts scene each year, this is not just another musical.

As has been chronicled, Ely was the only school selected in Minnesota to put Frozen on this year, and that alone makes this a special event.

Interest and anticipation have only seemed to build in the months and weeks leading up to the production, and the school’s fabled Washington Auditorium has been transformed into a place of winter magic.

While most years the school musical includes a couple of performances, the interest in Frozen has demanded more.

In addition to the debut on Friday, Jan. 19, there are both matinee and evening shows on Saturday, Jan. 20, and a grand finale the afternoon of Sunday, Jan. 21.

The buzz about Frozen is reaching a fever pitch this week, and the demand for tickets has prompted organizers to sell tickets online, in advance, and with reserved seating.

As of late in the week, more than 1,200 tickets had been sold, but there was still plenty of availability for each of the four shows, particularly in the side sections of the cavernous auditorium.

Frozen brings together talented actors, actresses and singers from both Ely and Northeast Range high schools and the area’s home-school community, and this group has already worked diligently  to work through their lines, practice their songs and remember their spots on the stage.

There’s no doubt the finished product next weekend is the result of hour upon hour of work and dedication by the students who have honed their craft to put on a show that will be remembered.

While we’ll see much of leading actors and actresses Gabriel White, Matthew Johnson, Ruby Milton and Rachel Carter on stage, we offer them and the entire cast best wishes as they get ready for a week to remember.

Hats off to director Mike Rouse and his assistants as well, for putting together not just a school musical, but a true community event.

We’re getting into the spirit here at the Echo as well. You’ll notice that for one week only we are indeed the Arendelle Echo, as we will become the magical community of Frozen for a weekend of song and splendor.

If you haven’t done so already, get your tickets now and sit back and enjoy the show!

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