After months of rehearsals and preparations, “Sister Act” shines a new light on the memorable film in a rocking musical through June 2 at the Racine Theatre Guild, 2519 Northwestern Ave.
The musical follows Deloris Van Cartier, an aspiring singer who must go into hiding at a convent after she witnesses a murder. Forced to live as a nun, Sister Mary Clarence, she helps give new life to the sisters’ choir and rediscovers the joys of friendship and music.
Anne Mollerskov, a long-time Guild volunteer, has appeared in many productions including “Always…Patsy Cline,” “Marvelous Wonderettes,” and “The Rocky Horror Show.” This time, she portrays one of the most high-spirited sisters at the convent, Mary Patrick.
“Mary Patrick is pure joy,” Mollerskov stated. “She finds pleasure in day to day activities and experiences with an almost child-like exuberance, but on the flip side, she can be incredibly intuitive.”
For those familiar with the original 1992 Whoopi Goldberg film, they might be surprised on many new aspects of the show.
“Although the plot line in the movie and the musical are very similar, the music is entirely different,” Mollerskov continued. “The musical version has a completely new score by Alan Menken, who does a great job of capturing the style of the late ‘70s.”
Douglas Instenes is directing the production and credits the new script for adding not only wonderful music, but a deeper message to the story.
“Deloris shows the sisters, and all of us really, what makes a true performer,” Instenes said. “It’s not just about the words and notes you are singing. It’s about the passion and joy for music and the story you are telling.”
A combination of new and returning cast members join the production including Jasmine Ridgell as Deloris Van Cartier, Norgie Metzinger as Eddie, Bob Benson as Curtis, Robbyn Wilks as Mother Superior, Dawn Van Ess as Sister Mary Lazarus, and Waverly McCollum as Sister Mary Roberts, along with a large ensemble. As with every production, it takes not only a big cast, but many crew members to put it all together.
“The Guild is like an extended family,” Mollerskov shared. “Even if it’s been a while since the last time you did a show together, you end up picking up friendships right where you left off with cast and crew alike. I am always impressed with the amount of talented kind-hearted people at the Guild.”
“The entire production team creates such a strong bond during a show and cheer each other on,” Instenes added. “One of Deloris’s songs really captures that spirit in the lines: ‘I’ve got my sisters’ love and pride and in my sisters’ eyes I recognize the star I want to be.’”
Performances of “Sister Act” are scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays, and 2 p.m. Saturdays, May 19-June 2. Tickets cost $20 for adults, $18 for seniors, and $15 for students. There will also be additional performances at 7 p.m. May 20 and 24 for a discounted rate of $16.
Tickets and other information are available online at www.racinetheatre.org; by calling 262-633-4218; and at the RTG box office, 2519 Northwestern Ave., weekdays from noon to 6 p.m. and 90 minutes prior to each performance.
“I think everyone will leave with a catchy tune in their head and a smile on their face,” Mollerskov added. “I am extremely grateful to be in this production and can’t wait to ‘spread the love around’ in ‘Sister Act!’”