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SHS brings 'Guys and Dolls' to town

The Shafter High Drama Department put on their production of the Broadway hit Guys and Dolls at the Fred Starrh Performing Arts Center last weekend, giving the crowd a taste of Broadway, with a musical that tested the actors singing, dancing and acting skills in one production.

Led by advisor Hal Friedman, the actors told the story of 1920s New York, with a glimpse of the underbelly of the city, with gambling, drinking and the fight that leads to redemption.

It tells of Nathan Detroit, a small-time gambler who runs a crap game downtown. He was played by Andrew Magana, who is a veteran on the SHS stage. Andrew was hilarious in the SHS's production of The Drowsy Chaperone, stealing every scene he was in as a "pastry chef."

Magana's Detroit is in a longtime relationship with showgirl Adelaide, played by Emily McGuire. Emily has been in every SHS production since her freshman year. She gives the Adelaide a mix of sultriness, vulnerability and stubbornness, as the want-to-be bride, trying to get Nathan to the altar after 14 years of hoping.

Enter Skye Masterson, played by Angel Gomez. Masterson bets Nathan that he could bring a Doll of his choosing to dinner in Havana. The winner would get $1,000. This money is needed to put on a craps game at the garage downtown. Nathan picks Sara, a director at the local mission. Detroit thinks that there is no way Sara would go out with Masterson.

Sara is played by SHS veteran Estefania Gutierrez. Estefania is a junior and has been doing theater for two years. Sara ends up going to Cuba with Masterson, seemingly losing the bet for Detroit. But Masterson, who had truly fallen for Sara, decided to deny winning the bet, to save Sara's reputation.

In the end, both Adelaide and Sara got their men. Nathan Detroit went straight and started his own newsstand, and Masterson began working with the Mission Band.

The play was also aided by a wonderful live score performed by the Shafter High Jazz Band. The band supplied perfect accompaniment to the acting and singing, giving the crowd a live Broadway experience.

Others in the main cast included Luke Kratt, who played Nicely Nicely Johnson, a gambler who worked with Detroit. Kratt has been doing theater for the past five years and enjoys entertaining the crowd. Luke is remembered for his outstanding performance in the high school's production of Singing in the Rain last year.


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