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Don’t Let the Critics Scare You Off… If Your Kids Love Disney’s High School Musical, Don’t Miss High School Musical On Stage At Paper Mill Playhouse Through December 7th

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I was too sleepy to post London and Maddie’s review of High School Musical On Stage at Paper Mill Playhouse on the night after the performance, but the girls, Rex and I, along with the rest of London’s Brownie troop, really enjoyed ourselves. I’ve already seen an extremely negative review from Peter Filichia at the Star-Ledger, but he clearly hated Disney’s High School Musical concept from the git-go.

Now I know I’ll never be a critic, since I avoid events that I know I won’t like, so my disappointments are few and far between.  My mother also taught me that if I don’t have anything nice to say, I’m better off saying nothing at all, but the one thing I would never do is recommend something that I really didn’t like.  So if you’re thinking about taking your kids to see High School Musical On Stage at Paper Mill Playhouse, here’s what you should consider.  My daughters, London and Maddie, have seen all three of Disney’s High School Musical movies, they know all the words to the songs and perform them as part of their girl band routine.  If you haven’t seen any of the movies, the on stage performance probably isn’t right for you…but the concept, in a nutshell, is modern-day Grease with a G rating.

Directed by Mark S. Hoebee, starring Sydney Morton & Chase Peacock, and reuniting choreographer Denis Jones & Bailey Hanks, this production promises to be a great time for teens, tweens and anyone who remembers the triumphs and challenges of high school. While London and Maddie can’t wait to see one of their favorite Disney movies brought to life, I have to admit that I am always surprised at the wide age range of High School Musical and Disney Channel fans. Our teenage babysitters truly seem to look forward to joining our first and second graders to watch Troy, Gabriella, Sharpay, and the Wildcats in the two DVDs, and fans of all ages have hit the theatres for Disney’s High School Musical 3. I’m always a fan of people-watching, and, other than a few cranky critics, the crowd at the Paper Mill Playhouse for High School Musical On Stage was made up of tween girls singing their hearts out along with Sharpay and Gabriella.

High School Musical On Stage! runs through Sunday, December 7th. Many of the weekend matinees are sold out, but you can still call the Paper Mill Playhouse Box Office at (973) 376-4343 or order tickets online for the remaining performances. And here’s something cool for serious HSM fans…purchase a ticket to any Sunday evening performance of High School Musical and you will have the opportunity to meet with the cast of the show. Before the performance, from 6:30 - 7:00 pm at the F.M. Kirby Carriage House, members of the cast will be on hand to sign autographs and take photos.

  • Henson Ray
    7:17 am on December 1st, 2008 1

    You’re really a great mom to make sure your kids see so much theater. I felt very lucky as a kid to be exposed to all kinds of culture, and I think a live stage experience is one of the most enriching events a child can experience.


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