WARRENSBURG Interrupting a rehearsal for a school musical, Warrensburg Drama Club coach Jim Corriveau jumped onstage and instructed an actor.
“The audience has to feel your passion at this moment,” he said, gesturing as he stared into the actor’s eyes. “You have to ‘live’ the part.”
Minutes later, he was back on the stage, gyrating amongst several dozen student actors and actresses in a dance number set to a classic rock anthem, demonstrating the energy they should all put into their moves.
Warrensburg High School Senior Logan Webster watched him dance with abandon, and he smiled.
“Mr. Corriveau is so energetic and really ‘into’ this — every motion, every gesture has to be ‘just right,’” he said. “He has this vision for each show, and he always makes it happen.”
On three nights next week, Thursday through Saturday March 29, a crowd will see the results of three months of such high-energy rehearsals, as “The Princess Bride” is performed.
No less than 75 students are involved in the production of The Princess Bride, a hit adventure fantasy movie that Corriveau adapted for the stage. He added a new dimension — classic & contemporary rock songs, backed up by a live jazz-rock ensemble of skilled musicians.
After pounding out an accompaniment on piano in the March 14 rehearsal, Corriveau bounded onstage to offer more instruction. In a staged melee, Blake Vaisey was twirling Garry Ross above his head so Ross’ feet would appear to strike Jacob Johnson in the face.
“Snap your head back, absorb some of the blow,” Corriveau barked at Johnson. “And you’ve got to wince to convince the audience.”
The trio repeated the scene, and the collision looked and realistic, prompting cheers from the cast.
“Okay, now you’ve got it,” Corriveau said.
Webster watched Johnson hit the floor as the collision was repeated.