Songs for taking a stand, and a tale of young love

Hickory Ridge High School's theater department will present two shows on each of two evenings this week: a play titled "Of Poems, Youth, and Spring" and a musical, "Songs for a New World."

Performances of the two shows are scheduled at 7 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday in the high school's auditorium.

Tickets are $5 if reserved before opening night or $7 at the door.

To reserve tickets, contact a cast member or call the theater department or the school media center at either 704-454-6570 or 704-454-6561.

Reserved tickets will be held at will-call.

"Of Poems, Youth, and Spring" concerns the first romance of a high school boy and girl.

The play's four scenes correspond to the seasons; each represents a stage in the couple's romance.

Each season is introduced by two small choruses, which, with light humor and fantasy, tease, scold and provide contrast to the light drama of romance. This play won first place in the finals of the Texas Interscholastic League Contest.

"Songs for a New World" is a song cycle, a collection of songs linked around one theme and designed to be performed as a single entity.

As lyricist Jason Robert Brown says, the musical is "about one moment. It's about hitting the wall and having to make a choice, or take a stand, or turn around and go back."

The musical has a small multi-ethnic cast and a score that runs the gamut of today's popular music.

"Songs For A New World" was Hickory Ridge's competition piece this past Friday at the annual N.C. Theatre Conference's High School Theatre Festival Competition in Kings Mountain.

Theater teacher Melanie Elicker is director of the shows.