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By Kristina Pritchett

The South Orange County School of the Arts (SOCSA) will be performing The Sound of Music at Dana Hills High School with shows running from Wednesday, Dec. 7 to Saturday, Dec. 10.

The hills—in this case, the Porthole Theater—will be alive when the cast of The Sound of Music takes center stage Wednesday night for their first performance.

Brittany Casey, musical theater and dance teacher and director of the show, said this performance is different because two students helped direct the show.

“We had two students apply for the positions, and they have done a phenomenal job,” Casey said Tuesday night.

When asked if she was nervous about letting students take a lead on the musical, she said no.

“We communicated a lot and they know how I work, how I operate,” Casey said.

On stage Tuesday night, the students were doing a run-through of the show to prepare for opening night.

“I think they’re ready,” Casey said just before a musical number began.

Junior Siena Mehta and senior Ashley Patrick, the student directors, said they’re excited for the performances.

“I think it really came together,” Ashley said. “In the beginning, we were nervous about everyone coming together as one unit.”

Siena agreed and said they were both nervous about taking control over students, and friends.

“I’m shy, and stepping out of my comfort zone was a little nerve-wracking, but it’s been really fun,” Siena said.

They said people should attend the show because it’s a fun take on a classic production.

“Everyone knows the songs,” Ashley said. “And our cast is really really amazing, it’s a great opportunity to see them.”

The cast includes:

Kate Simpson, junior: Maria Rainer

Jeremy Ingraham, senior: Captain Georg von Trapp

Libbie Louis, senior: Liesl von Trapp

Clayton Walker, sophomore: Friedrich von Trapp

Taylor Evans, junior: Louisa von Trapp

Parker Keeley, sophomore: Kurt von Trapp

Maeve Wilson, sophomore: Briggitta von Trapp

Amy Valencia, junior: Marta von Trapp

Nicola Wilson, sixth-grader at Marco Forester Middle School: Gretl von Trapp

Mitchell Csermak, senior: Rolf Gruber

Dillion Avillamoza, sophomore: Max Detweiller

Emmy Fry, junior: Elsa Schrader

Kaitlin Wright, junior Mother Abbess

The shows will be at 7 p.m. in the Porthole Theater. Tickets are $15, with a student rush on Wednesday for $5.

For more information and to buy tickets, visit

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