When a village of fairytale characters is evicted from their home, they are forced to settle in a swamp to the displeasure of Shrek, the surly ogre that resides there.
In exchange for the deed to the swamp, Shrek agrees to rescue Princess Fiona for Lord Farquaad. Along his journey to relinquish his precious swamp, Shrek surprisingly falls in love.
That storyline will be played out in four performances on the stage at Chelsea High School (CHS) this weekend, as the CHS Performing Arts Department presents ‘Shrek: The Musical’ April 5 and 6, at 7 p.m., and April 7, at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m. Tickets cost $7 for students, teachers, and seniors, $10 for adults, and can be purchased by calling (617) 466-5051.
“It’s surreal. There’s a lot of laughter,” said senior Austin Henry Vega, who plays Shrek. “It has everything for everyone.”
Having been abandoned at 7 years old, Shrek was accustomed to being on his own, but during his quest, he learns the value of friendship and bonds with Donkey. Shrek evolves from a guarded grump into a valiant hero.
“Shrek is a character I think a lot of people would relate to. He was alone all his life and never experienced love,” explained Vega about the character he plays in his final production at CHS. “He has a grim way of looking at the world. In the end, he learns that he is loved.”
In this romantic comedy, Fiona envisions herself being saved by a handsome prince. She dreams of sharing a true love’s kiss that will break her curse.
However, she learns that life is not always what she expects.
“In the end you see a tale of them falling in love and creating a family, with Donkey included,” said junior Samantha Areli Iraheta, who plays Fiona. “My favorite part about this production is seeing us grow as characters and as a family. Everyone in the cast and crew created a child of a show that we put all our effort in. I am proud of every person who stands on this stage and is in the crew.”
‘Shrek: The Musical’ has a cast of 26 and a crew of 15 members, including middle school students from throughout Chelsea.
“My favorite part about working on this show is getting to work with people you’ve created a bond with. There are constantly new people and perspectives,” said sophomore Tammy Frias Caraballo, sound manager. “The music is so good. I wake up in the morning with songs already stuck in my head. I think people should come see it because you get taken to a world filled with magic. It’s a great show for friends and family.”