‘Toppers to show off talents

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By Kirsten Laskey

Starting Friday, audiences at Duane Smith Auditorium can sit back, relax and watch a revue. It will be like playing a DVD of a retro movie; where viewers can  see a “Scooby-Do”–like story unfold. But suddenly something will go awry; it seems that someone is messing with the remote.

This is the concept for the upcoming Topper Revue. It is titled, “Mystery Mansion.”

“It’s going to be awesome,” Emcee Stuart Ruppercht said. “We’ve added a new twist to it.”

He explained that the cast will pretend to be on a DVD and someone will play with the remote control.

Plus, a special guest will appear at the final show.

Fellow emcee Rachel Hill explained that they chose this concept from a “bunch” of ideas; it was appealing, she said, because it offered the most ideas and they “could run with it.”

Another emcee, Ellen Kress, described this year’s revue as “retro cool.”

Their efforts have impressed Olions Thespian Club director Nina Saunders. “The emcees have done a lot of work on this piece … they did a lot of work over Christmas break,” she said. “I was very impressed that they were able to get everything accomplished.”

One of things they accomplished was selecting a great variety of acts.

Saunders said this year’s acts are unique from last year. This year, students will ride unicycles and perform Bollywood numbers on the stage.

Los Alamos High School students put their various talents to the test by auditioning for the show and the emcees decided who had the right stuff.

One group that made the cut includes Stephen Reimes, Molly Willms, David Bjorklund, Alex Austell, Meredith Webster, Sam Gruthaus, Adam Nekimken and Natalie Swinhoe.

Willms said their performance is a Monty Python skit about a bunch of “bandies” that get together.

Bjorklund said Webster approached the group with the idea and after the reading the script, they decided to present it in the revue.

What’s the best part of being a part of the talent show? “(We) just like making people laugh,” Austell said.

Reimes agreed. “It’s all about laughing.”

In addition to comedy routines, other students have decided to educate the audience about dance.

Members of the advance ballroom class, Yasmeen Lookman, Ellen Rabin, Bethany Haines, Tiffani Nasise, Chip Carter, Ryan Elson, Miles Mojica-Freeland, Madeleine Dougherty, Brandon Gurley and Josh Goodey will present a rumba dance.

Ballroom may be considered boring to some, but these dancers are hoping to change their minds.

“They’ll be able to see what it is,” Nasise said. “It’s this gorgeous way to tell a story.”

The emcees are also sure to entertain the crowd.

“The emcees are very funny and they worked really well together,” Saunders said. Emcee Elizabeth Dombek added, “It’s an amazing group of people and we work really hard.”

Even with their time constraints (the show had to be mounted two weeks earlier than last year) Dombek said she is amazed they were able to put together a show of such high quality.

See these students’ work at 7 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Jan. 22 and 23. It will also be performed at 2 p.m. Sunday and 8 p.m. Jan. 24. Tickets are $7 for students and seniors and $12 for adults.