Blackfriars Guild to Perform “Shrek the Musical”

Past Fenwick Blackfriars Guild productions like Beauty and the Beast, David Copperfield and The Music Man have often been old tales and or classics. However, Shrek the Musical, chosen by the director, Mr. Faille, is a new and modern production. Most people have heard of the movie, but not the musical. So what is currently happening behind the scenes this year to prepare for this new, modern performance on the Fenwick stage? 

The cast rehearsals officially started on February 12. While the initial schedule of preparations included a total of thirty rehearsals and crew sessions for a performance scheduled on March 30, Shrek has temporarily been postponed due to the coronavirus school closure.

Set design—determined by Mrs. Dactilidis, Mr. Conlin, and Mr. Faille—has begun with input from students, including Abel Chaidez and Kelly Colbert-Adam. These students are the managers and lead artistic designers of the paint crew. Construction of the sets has already begun, in spite of some minor setbacks, as the crew must share the auditorium stage with all school events, including Mass and band concerts. In spite of short-staffing on this year’s construction crew, the sets had been on track for completion by the end of March. 

Students wondering how things are done behind the scenes are still welcome to participate in the set crew when school reopens. On the construction crew, students learn how to use power tools, build various set pieces and most importantly, how to properly construct safe sets. 

In addition to these set preparations, the paint crew has started painting the backdrop for the musical. Knowing how well they have done the backdrops previously, the paint crew is expected to create some amazing designs for Shrek. Each year, the paint crew has transformed the sets into something so magical that it appears as if the audience is actually with the characters!

As time goes on, putting the musical together will be an especially hard job for the sound crew. Laurel Franczek and Emily Salinas, the managers of the sound crew, explained that microphone placement will be a challenge with all of the big costumes and moving parts throughout the show.  

With almost nine years of experience with musicals under his belt, Mr. Faille embraces these challenges. He feels that Fenwick’s production of Shrek will be refreshing and fun, allowing him to use his directing skills to a great extent. 

Crew director Mrs. Dactilidis said, “It’s exciting! I love the classics but I also love a new modern idea like Shrek.” 

Mr. Conlin, not only a new teacher but also a new member of crew this year, exclaimed, “It’s exciting, and it should give [the] crew a lot to work on. It’s something new based on the movie that a lot of people have heard of but have never seen live.”

Once the show is rescheduled, audience members will be able to purchase tickets online at