These Bay Shore student actors are in for a treat in the run-up to their production of Chicago that will run March 21-23 at the high school.
On Wednesday, March 6, the dance captain from Broadway’s Chicago, David Bushman, and the show’s on-stage concertmaster, violinist Marshall Coid, will be paying a second visit to the school to share their expertise with 180 students who are all part of this month’s shows.
The two also visited Bay Shore in early February for coaching sessions.
The Bay Shore Schools Arts Education Fund, the same community based not-for-profit that brought 500 Bay Shore students to see “Hamilton” in New York in 2016, is sponsoring the two days of master classes conducted by Bushman and Coid.
Next week, as some did on Feb. 6, students will get a master class in Bob Fosse’s choreography, as well as vocal coaching on how to best deliver the great songs of Kander and Ebb. Violinist Coid will coach both singers and the high school pit orchestra, according to an Education Fund announcement.
Bushman, a Fosse specialist, has been Chicago’s dance captain for for eight years.
That’s a role in which he teaches and integrates replacements into the cast and works with the company to maintain the integrity of Fosse’s choreography.
Bushman has been teaching and coaching the style of Fosse to all level of dancers, from master classes to celebrities such as Brandy and Mel B. Coid, who is also a professional singer, has been “concertmaster” of the on-stage orchestra for over 20 years.
He has accompanied every Broadway cast member since the show opened in 1996, the announcement reads.
Bay Shore’s long tradition of presenting an annual fully staged musical dates back to 1961. The school’s current theater director, faculty member Chris Bilella, is himself a Bay Shore graduate, as are pit orchestra director Christine Sprague Mendolia and vocal director Katie Malpgili.
“Our cast of Chicago is beyond excited to have this chance to work with Broadway professionals of this caliber,” said Bilella. “Most of the cast saw the Broadway show a few weeks ago and had a chance to meet and talk with the cast.
“Now we have a chance to work with the dance captain and concert master as we prepare our version of Chicago.”
This is believed to be the first time Bay Shore students will receive coaching from veteran Broadway pros. Tickets to Bay Shore’s production of Chicago can be purchased by calling 631-748-9098 or by emailing BSHSdrama@bayshoreschools.org.
The show dates are March 21, 22 and 23 at 7 p.m.
Photo: A scene from February’s master’s class at the high school. (courtesy)