PLACENTIA, NL — On May 7th and 8th, the musical put on by Laval High in Placentia, “Laval on Vinyl,” went off with nothing less than a bang.
After the lights went up on the stage, the audience was treated to a resounding medley of some well-known favourites—“Little Wing,” “Love Her Madly” and “No Matter,” to name a few. Following this rendition, everyone in the audience knew that they were in for a show. And then some.
Written by Connie Newhook and Denise Batten and directed by a collective pool of talent—Barry Davis, Renee Warren, Connie Newhook with Brian Coombs, Erin Murphy, and Zack Newhook—“Laval on Vinyl” was jam-packed with music.
After the first song ended, the lights went down. Off to the side, the lights then went up and we were taken to a small music shop known as “Jack’s Vinyl Frontier.” There, we met Jack as he was spending a day like any other day, sorting his records. While fussing with his collection, some students from the local school popped by in order to get some help with a music project.
After listening quietly to their ideas about music, Jack quickly learned that he had some work to do to open their eyes. After all, there was a vast universe out there of music and they just didn’t seem to have a clue.
And so, Jack got down to work. He gradually introduced them to the array of genres of music, from rock to easy listening and country. Each time, the audience was treated to favourites that included “Catch the Wind,” “Coat of Many Colours,” “Stand By Me,” “I Love Rock ‘n Roll, and “Imagine.”
Of course, Jack may have been intent on his mission to enlighten these uninformed and clearly naive students. However, they on the other hand were determined to broaden his life. As far as they were concerned, music may have always been Jack’s life. Still, he really needed to get out more. When a young woman entered the store, someone who clearly shared Jack’s love of vinyl, the students appointed themselves as matchmaker.
In the end, Jack reluctantly relented. No question that his life was about to enter yet another frontier. Then the lights shifted and the music began for the finale. On cue, all the students joined in to raise the roof to the strains of “Sympathy For The Devil.” The energy on the stage flowed around the room echoing and reverberating off the walls. It really was at the “vinyl” frontier.
Placentia is part of the Cape Shore, which extends around the cape from Long Harbour to north of Branch, a region that is known for its musical aptitude and expertise. As a result, the writers had a large store of musical ability at their disposal, something that was clearly evident, both on the stage and behind the scenes.
Ever since 2001, when Laval High began to stage musicals, they have been outdoing themselves. This year was no exception. Now we can sit back and wait with anticipation for next year. There’ll be some familiar faces and some new ones, too. But what will never change is the high calibre of artistry and creativity that will no doubt weave together to yield yet another outstanding show.