The 1990 hit film “Ghost” tugged on the heartstrings of audiences around the world. The story of a man coming back to earth as a ghost after a fatal mugging has stood the test of time, so much so that, in 2011, it was made into a musical and made its debut in Manchester. The popular production then went on tour all over the world.
Now, for the first time, it is coming to Brooklyn as Fontbonne Hall Academy’s relatively new drama club decided to take on the production. The four year old group has produced shows such as “Little Women,” “Legally Blonde” and “Grease.”
“The director, Susan Huizinga had seen ‘Ghost’ on Broadway and fell in love with show. She thought it was beautiful,” said Meredith Kelly, who is assisting Huizinga throughout the production and rehearsals. “Recently, the rights became available for non-professionals to do the show. She wanted to be one of first. It’s also special because it marks the 25th anniversary of the movie’s release.”
The show, while staying true to the film, includes changes. “It’s very similar to the movie, but there’s a lot more music,” Kelly said. “A lot of the famous lines in the film were inspirations for songs that were written for the show.” The show will also include the classic hit from the movie, “Unchained Melody.”
To make up for the lack of wing space on stage, projection screens will play a role in the production.
Since Fontbonne is an all-girls school, the production had to go outside to call upon male leads from schools such as Wagner and St. Francis College. “It’s a mixture of high school and college students,” Kelly said. “The boys from the outside schools are very dedicated. We are extremely lucky to have such talented young men to play the important characters.”
One of the expected standout performances will likely comes from Wagner student Antonio Oliveri, who plays the lead character, Sam Wheat. “Antonio is excellent. He’s a great role model for the younger kids,” she said.
Kelly’s daughter, Ashley is playing the female lead of Molly Jensen. “She’s great. Theater is a very important part of my daughter’s life,” Kelly said.
The school’s administration has also played a huge role in making the show a success. “New Principal Mary Ann Spicijaric and Assistant Principal Gilda King have been very supportive, which is very important,” said Kelly. “They’ve been wonderful.”
As the show inches closer to opening night, excitement has been building for audiences. “We’ve been handing out flyers starting and now we’re starting to get lots of phone calls,” reported Kelly. “They’re from people who had seen our past couple of shows and were impressed with the kids from last year’s show.”
The hard-working cast and crew are also excited. “They’re one big, family which is nice,” said Kelly. “They’ve learned about theater, discipline and responsibility and they’ve had a great time. They’re already crying about it ending.”
“Ghost” will make its debut at Fontbonne on Friday, May 1 at 7:30 p.m. Additional performances will be held on Saturday, May 2 at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m., and on Sunday, May 3 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $15. To order in advance, call 718-541-6049 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Tickets can also be purchased at the door.