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The Little Mermaid – A Review

Ruth Gleason

This article does not reflect the opinion of Forest Hills Public Schools.

Last week, Eastern’s theater department presented The Little Mermaid. After months of hard work, late nights, and long hours, the cast finally took to the stage.

While I’m personally not a huge fan of the actual Little Mermaid plot, I loved this musical. The costumes, songs, presentation, characters, and voices were absolutely incredible. There was never a dull moment and the audience was kept laughing throughout from all of the jokes and comedic relief.

Ariel was played by Noor Hassan (’25) and Prince Eric by Nate Kelso (’24). If Eastern ever had a real-life Disney princess, it would be Noor. Her voice projected across the stage and echoed in the auditorium. She played her part beautifully and made the perfect Ariel. Nate also did a stellar job, with his solos and facial expressions. It didn’t feel like I was watching a high-school production, but instead something straight from Broadway.

Some of the supporting characters such as Flounder, played by Jonah Howell (’25), Sebastian with Trey Butka (’24), and Scuttles by Owen Pelligrini (’25), also seemed to steal the show whenever they made their way on stage. Jonah managed to play a perfect jealous fish role; the expressions and inflections in his voice matched exactly how you would imagine a jealous friend to be. Trey also had one of his best performances with his depiction of Sebastian. Adopting the classic Sebastian accent, Trey never once dropped it throughout the whole two-hour musical. Whether it was simply in speech or song, Trey kept a strong accent throughout. Finally, Owen in his role of Scuttles also did amazing. He also maintained an accent throughout the musical, adding in the occasional seagull squawk.

The choreography also went above and beyond; a tap dance number was performed by Scuttles and his seagull friends. Perfectly in sync with expressions and moves, they took this number to the next level. The cast also wore Heelies throughout the show, allowing them to seemingly “swim” across the stage by gliding on the back of the wheels. This created a cool effect where it helped the audience imagine themselves underwater.

Ariel’s sisters were also played incredibly well. The six sisters were played by Alaina Gispon (’24), Hope Orban (’24), Maddie Lukhart (’25), Emily Gilbert (’26), Stella Cummings (’25), and Kayla Decker (‘25). Ursula’s eel minions were played by Kelsey Pattison (’24) and Ellison Durkin (’25). All of these characters sang beautifully. While the eels did make me a bit uncomfortable due to their slithering acting, that was their goal, so I can only give them credit for a job well done.

Finally, Ursala herself was played by Ms. Hebel in honor of Tessa Stanley. Tessa had originally been assigned to play Ursala until we lost her in December. In honor of her, Ms. Hebel took over the role. While Tessa was not there herself, I know that she is proud of the musical that the theater department put on. Tessa had a huge role in making this musical a reality, as every day, she and Trey Butka would ask Ms. Hebel to direct The Little Mermaid as the next big project. Without Tessa, this would not have been able to become a reality. Everyone cast in the musical — both characters and stage crew — took it upon themselves to carry Tessa’s positive energy and light with them throughout, leading to the beautiful performance we were granted.

Overall, I really enjoyed the musical. I think it was one of the best musicals produced yet, and I especially enjoyed it because I knew the plot, unlike I usually do. Make sure to support Eastern Theater by attending their productions! If you’re interested in participating in something, make sure to check out their website or social media for more news!

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About the Contributor
Anna Alt
Anna Alt, Editor
Anna Alt is a senior at Forest Hills Eastern. This is her second year on the Hawk Herald staff and first year as the Editor-In-Chief. In school you can find her in National Honors Society, Kids Food Basket, Volunteer Club, and most commonly, struggling over her AP Chemistry notes. Outside school, however, you’ll often see her on (hopefully not in) the Grand River rowing with her team. If she’s not spotted there, then she’s at home with her favorite chocolate chip cookies on the couch watching the wondrous show “Bluey.” After graduating, Anna hopes to pursue a career in either Pediatrics or Neuroscience.
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