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PRESS PHOTO BY DOUGLAS GRAVES Whitehall High School PRESS PHOTO BY DOUGLAS GRAVES Whitehall High School "South Pacific," from left: Kimberly Casey (Nellie Forbush), Leka Ward (Bloody Mary), Tristan Morales (Joseph Cable) and Michael Maggio (Emile de Becque).

High School Musicals: Whitehall

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 by DOUGLAS GRAVES Special to The Press in Focus

'South Pacific'

The war is not the only conflict as interracial love is confronted and emotions run high in "South Pacific," 7:30 p.m. April 3, 4, 5 and 2 p.m. April 6, auditorium, Whitehall High School, 3800 Mechanicsville Road, Whitehall.

The musical is directed by Andrew Borghesani with choreography by Vanessa Ruggiero.

Navy Nurse Ensign Nellie Forbush (Kimberly Casey) is romantically inclined toward plantation owner Emile de Becque (Michael Maggio), but needs to resolve her Southern racial prejudices toward Emile's mixed-race children.

In spite of Nellie's problems there is a war going on, World War II, and Marine Lieutenant Joseph Cable (Tristan Morales) arrives on a secret mission. A Tonkinese woman, Bloody Mary (Leka Ward), convinces Cable to go to a nearby island where he will find what he is looking for.

There, Cable falls in love with Bloody Mary's daughter and confronts his own racial bias.

The musical, premiering on Broadway in 1949, received 10 Tonys, including: Best Musical, Best Male Performer (Ezio Pinza) and Best Female Performer (Mary Martin), and ran for 1,925 performances. In 1950, the musical won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. The motion picture was released in 1958.

The book by Oscar Hammerstein II and Joshua Logan is based on James A. Michener's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1947 book, "Tales of the South Pacific." The music is by Richard Rodgers and the lyrics are by Hammerstein.

Songs include "Some Enchanted Evening," "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair," "Happy Talk" and "Bali Ha'i."

Tickets: 610-437-5081, ext. 93270