By Emma Weintraub
Walled Lake Central’s production of Oliver! debuted April 14-17 2016. Friends and family traveled far and near to see the production.
The show was very successful with two sold out shows, one of which was on the opening night.
“The show went well in my opinion. I feel relieved that I was able to keep everything together while I was under a lot of pressure,” Elijah Belanger said.
Oliver!, which was based off of the 1830’s Charles Dickens’ novel Oliver Twist, follows a young orphan boy named Oliver and his journey across London after he escapes from his orphanage.
While on the search for a family, Oliver (played by freshman Elijah Belanger) meets various characters who give him different pieces of advice, like the Artful Dodger (played by junior John Faubert) who inducts Oliver into his gang and into the world of pickpocketing. This world is supervised by Fagin (played by senior Seth Weinstein), who welcomes young Oliver and teaches him what it means to be a pickpocketer.
After entering Fagin’s gang, he is arrested by the police for suspicious activity. Fagin and his partner Bill Sykes (played by senior Josh Frink) then decide to have Sykes’ girlfriend Nancy (played by senior Lexie Labo) retrieve Oliver from the jail and deem him innocent. When he joins Fagin’s gang, Oliver is introduced to Nancy and her abusive husband, Bill Sykes. With all these dynamic characters Oliver goes through a whirlwind adventure.
“Although this is my first production at Walled Lake Central, I hope that I can successfully play the role of Oliver and give him the best light that I can. Even though he is a duller lead, most people try to give him an element of pizzazz that isn’t necessary. I want to keep the essence of Oliver as being a dull character in order to present him as he really is,” freshman Elijah Belanger said.
“I’m also really excited to be a part of the play and leave my mark as a well known character and hopefully expand my portfolio of characters that I have played and will play in the future,” continued Belanger