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Behind the scenes

Gateway auditions lure hopefuls

Marshall “Rick” Munnis of Holland sings a piece from the play as Music Director Kiel Krommer provides the music on keyboard. Gus Steeves. (click for larger version)
June 02, 2009
SOUTHBRIDGE — For most teens, summer is a time to get as far away from doing anything resembling studying as possible.

But that's not so for Sturbridge's Joe Conceison, Dudley's Aubrie Kimble and at least a dozen others. These young people, and several adults, plan to spend multiple nights each week studying lines, practicing songs and rehearsing dance steps for the Gateway Players performance of "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat."

It's not quite Conceison's first bite of the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, but it will be his first full-length version. In eighth grade, he said, he played Pharaoh in a medley skit from the play, but hasn't performed or seen the whole show. He has, however, done "Rent" for Tantasqua's drama club and acted in plays at Stageloft Theater.

When asked why he does it, he said, "The feeling of being on stage and singing on stage. It gives me a feeling of being at home."

To John Kennedy of Coventry, Conn., that feeling has prompted him to keep returning to Gateway even years after moving out of Southbridge. He has been with the troupe for 18 years.

For complete coverage, see Tuesday's Southbridge Evening News.

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