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LaMoure theater going back to the ’80s

Submitted photo Carson Good, left, and Riley Loeks, right, practice a scene from “Back to the 80s ... the Totally Awesome Musical!”

The LaMoure County Summer Musical production “Back to the 80s … the Totally Awesome Musical,” opens on July 10 at the LaMoure County Summer Musical Theatre.

Kelsey Johnson, an English teacher at LaMoure High School and director of the school’s drama club, is in her first her year as director of the LaMoure County Summer Musical.

“Back to the 80s” follows the senior class at William Ocean High School. The musical features a “Star Wars” dream sequence, high-energy dance scenes and musical score features such 1980s hits as “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go,” and “Love Shack.”

Johnson said it was the music that helped the LaMoure County Summer Musical Theatre Board choose “Back to the 80s.”

“Most people know these songs,” she said. “The music is a lot of fun, and the cast members are really into the music.”

Carson Good is playing Corey Palmer, the male lead. Palmer, who will be a junior at LaMoure High School, said this was his first time auditioning for the LaMoure summer musical.

“I did some children’s theater when I was younger,” he said about his experience.

Good said Palmer is a regular kid who goes through the regular struggles of a teen.

“He gets a crush on a girl, gets his heart broken and gets to be a hero,” Good said.

Good said he is enjoying working with a cast made up of people from in and outside of LaMoure.

“It’s fun, working with some new people,” he said.

His favorite song in the musical is “Wake Me Up Before You Go Go,” by Wham.

The cast started working on the production in early June. As they get close to the show’s opening night, Good said the practices are getting longer and more intense.

Good said this musical is good for all ages.

“It (the musical) is a lot of fun,” he said. “People will recognize the songs and have a fun time.”

Saidee Oberlander just graduated from Valley City High School and is playing the role of Cyndi Gibson. Oberlander said she has been in school and community theater productions since she was young. This is her first time taking part in the LaMoure summer musical.

“My speech coach is good friends with Kelsey (Johnson),” Oberlander said. “She (the coach) encouraged me to audition for the musical.”

Gibson is one of the popular kids at William Ocean High School, and she is very mean to the unpopular and some of the popular kids who make up her cliqué.

“She’s had a lot of boyfriends,” Oberlander said about Gibson. “She’s boy crazy and street smart.”

Oberlander said she is enjoying playing Gibson because her personality is opposite of her character’s.

“She has a lot of good insults, witty comebacks,” she said. “That is something I don’t always have.”

Johnson said working with the LaMoure Summer Musical Theatre has been a learning experience and fun.

“There is a lot of history in that building,” she said. “It’s fun to be in a building that holds 43 years of history.”

For tickets and more information about the musical, call (701) 883-5230 from noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Sun reporter Chris Olson can be reached at 701-952-8454 or by email at

If you go

What: LaMoure County Summer Musical Theatre production of “Back to the 80s … the Totally Awesome Musical!”

When: 8 p.m. July 10-12, July 17-19; 2 p.m. July 13 and 20.

Where: LaMoure County Summer Musical Theatre auditorium, LaMoure County Memorial Park, Grand Rapids, N.D.

Tickets are $10 reserved seating, $8 for a bench seat. General admission is $7 for adults, $5 for students, $3 for preschool children. Tickets are available by calling (701) 883-5230 from noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Chris Olson

Hometown: Traverse City, MI College: Northwestern Michigan College and Michigan State University

(701) 952-8454