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Teen musical tackles love, family

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse “Telephone Hour,” a song from “Bye Bye Birdie.” Director Paula Demers says its one of their favorite scenes. Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse "Bye, Bye Birdie." —Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse "Bye, Bye Birdie." —Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse "Bye, Bye Birdie." —Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse "Bye, Bye Birdie." —Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Hopkinton High School students rehearse “Bye Bye Birdie.” Courtesy of Kathy Donohoe

  • Poster for "Bye, Bye Birdie." —Courtesy



Monitor staff
Thursday, January 11, 2018

The halls of Hopkinton High School will be filled with the sounds of rock ’n roll this weekend as more than 40 students perform Bye Bye Birdie.

“We chose Bye Bye Birdie because it is a fun show, especially for teens,” said Director Paula Demers. “It needs a lot of energy and that is fun to perform onstage. They are also the perfect age for this show.”

Bye Bye Birdie is a comedic musical inspired by the fervor surrounding Elvis Presley. The fictional character Conrad Birdie is based on Presley.

After Conrad (Gerry Donahue) is drafted for the Army in 1957, his agent and agent’s girlfriend (Colby Malcolm and Cassidy Donohoe) come up with a last chance publicity stunt for the teen heartthrob – one lucky girl from his fan club will get a kiss on The Ed Sullivan Show.

That girl is 15-year-old Kim MacAfee (Leah Dinter) from Sweet Apple, Ohio, who just recently started going steady with her boyfriend Hugo Peabody (Casey Lewis). Hugo becomes jealous of Kim’s attraction to Conrad and their relationship begins to fall apart. Kim’s parents (played by Bryton Hanchett and Erin Donahue) are also not fans of the superstar.

Relationship difficulties also arise between showbiz agent Albert Peterson and secretary/girlfriend Rose Alvarez, especially when Albert’s mother, Mae Peterson (Fiona MacDonald), turns up.

The Ed Sullivan Show broadcast does not go as planned.

To find out the end, you’ll have to go watch the show. 

“As for creative liberties, I've tried to include the whole cast of 41 kids as much as possible,” Demers said. “I've also tried to put in little touches here and there to make it specific to our production.  For example, pictures of our actor playing Conrad is on the posters and fan club pins.”

Shows will be held Friday at 7 p.m. at Sunday at 2 and 7 p.m. at Hopkinton Middle High School. Tickets are $8 for students and seniors and $10 for adults. 

“I think the audience will love the show,” Demers said. “It is very upbeat and fun.  They will leave the theater humming the tunes and tapping their feet.”