SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- Despite missing critical rehearsals due to the weather this week, the Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School Repertory Theatre opened its production of the musical Once Upon a Mattress on Friday, March 9.

The show is based on the fairy tale The Princess and the Pea. It is set in an unhappy kingdom in which King Sextimus The Silent has been struck dumb by a witch's curse and is condemned not to speak again until "the mouse devours the hawk." The Queen has assumed power and has decreed that no one in the Kingdom may wed until her son, Prince Dauntless, marries a true princess of Royal blood. The Queen tests the eligibility of applicants and each has failed the almost impossible tests she has devised... until Princess Winnifred takes up the challenge.

Lead characters include the Minstrel (Samantha Sprechman), the Queen (Kaitlyn Lamendola), the Wizard (Ryan Lopez), Princess #12 (Lauren Barth), Prince Dauntless (Billy Kasper), the Jester (Paolo Bayotas III), King Sextimus The Silent (Nate Redmont), Lady Larken (Abigail Flanagan), Sir Harry (Peter Canevari), and Princess Winnifred (Sara Miller), who shines in a number of show-stopping scenes.

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The cast features 54 students: Grace Ahlin, Benjamin Artuso, Lauren Barth, Paolo Bayotas III, Pauline Bayotas, Caitlin Bourke, Gianna Calligy, Peter Canevari, Rachella Carlino, Antoinette Chango, John DeMarco, JJ Dionisio, Owen Donahue, Mac Ferrone, Robbie Fisher, Abigail Flanagan, Justyanna Fortna, Madison Gal, Nora Going, Amelia Graham, James Hahn, Alex Halpin, Vanessa Handy, Kyle Isolda, Milly Jones, Billy Kasper, Tara Kenoff, Gabrielle Klausner, Chris Laino, Kaitlyn Lamendola, Meagan Lavin, Sandraann Leporiere Cordone, Andrew Lomuscio, Ryan Lopez, Roberto Lugo, Matt Mahmet, Shannon McCreesh, Roy McGowan, Sara Miller, Sophie Pritchett, Sarah Rata, Nate Redmount, Olivia Robertiello, Maeve Robertson, William Robertson, Alexander Rossi, Rachel Schuman, Megan Sheehy, Oliver Sherry, Samantha Sprechman, Sydney Sprechman, Alexa Vierschilling, Ally Vlkovic, Danielle Vuono, Kyiani Womack
Performances will also be Saturday, March 10, Thursday, March 15, Friday, March 16 and Saturday, March 17 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, March 11 at 2:00 p.m.  All shows take place at SPFHS, 667 Westfield Road, Scotch Plains.  
Tickets may be purchased at and are $13 for students/seniors and $15 for adults.  All tickets will be $10 for theThursday, March 15 performance only. Seniors with “Gold Cards” may contact Kathleen Sheehy at to arrange for their ticket.