Arts & Entertainment

At Yorktown Stage, High School Never Sounded So Sweet

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Roma Scarano, Gina Gentile, Triona O’Callaghan and Gina Noto rehearse as the Marvelous Wonderettes. Credits: Casey Brehm
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YORKTOWN, N.Y. - What do you get when you cross 450 feet of streamers, 38 songs from the ‘50s and ‘60s, a cast of four talented females, and a high school gymnasium? Enter, “The Marvelous Wonderettes,” Yorktown Stage’s summer musical, running July 23–30.

“We know they haven’t heard of it...but they should trust us,” August Abatecola, artistic director, assures his audiences with a smile. And what’s not to trust? Act I of Wonderettes transports the audience back to Springfield High School prom. The year: 1958. The theme: Marvelous Dreams. Betty Jean (Gina Gentile, Bronx), Cindy Lou (Roma Scarano, West Harrison), Missy (Triona O’Callaghan, Yonkers), and Suzy (Gina Noto, Yorktown)—The Marvelous Wonderettes themselves—have stepped in last-minute as the night’s musical entertainment (here supported by music director Stephen Ferri and his live five-piece band).

Love triangles, attempted sabotage and fire-baton-twirling ensue, as they do, culminating in the Wonderettes’ 10-year-reunion in Act II.

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Expect to be actively engaged in each 45-minute act, while the Wonderettes perform for you, their classmates, harmonizing such hits as “Lollipop,” “Lipstick on Your Collar,” “Son of a Preacher Man,” and “Respect.”

So why take Abatecola’s word for it and see a musical this summer that you’ve probably never heard of? Well, for one thing, the set-list is infectious, as can be inferred from just a few of the songs mentioned above. Secondly, it’s being led by the theater’s resident director/choreographer duo—Abatecola and Carrie Silvernail—who were responsible for last summer’s hit, “All Shook Up.”

If we’re getting particularly pragmatic, “The Marvelous Wonderettes” is cheaper than “Hamilton.” In fact, if you buy two tickets to “Wonderettes,” your third seat will be free (online only, advance sale).

Cast member and Yorktown resident Gina Noto does a wonderful job articulating Wonderettes’ appeal: “Since they are the entertainment for their prom and 10-year reunion in the show, the real audience is who we are performing for, so we get the opportunity to connect even more on many levels. It’s really just a feel good show. With everything going on in our world today, I think we all need a reason to escape and laugh for an hour or so and that we can guarantee!”

So don your crinoline and rev up your Thunderbird—high school is here to be relived or reimagined, mid-century style. Tickets are available by phone (914-962-0606), in-person at the box office, or online at yorktownstage.org.

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