JOHNS CREEK, Ga. — Autrey Mill Middle School students hope to “Make ‘Em Laugh” with their production of “Singin’ in the Rain Jr.” on Friday, April 26 and Saturday, April 27. 

Adapted from the beloved 1952 movie musical, “Singin’ in the Rain Jr.” tells the story of Hollywood leading man Don Lockwood, played by seventh grader Cole Hall, as Tinseltown transitions from the silent-film era to “talkies.”

The musical-romantic comedy also features the talent of eighth grader Vyjayanthi Burma as Kathy Selden, eighth grader Ugo Anyanwutaku as Cosmo Brown and seventh grader Olivia Courtney as Lina Lamont.

“The musical is very exciting with lots of singing and dancing. With the help of our teachers, we are getting better every second along the way,” Anyanwutaku said. “Working with the whole cast is an awesome experience, and we have a great ensemble.”

More than 40 students have been involved to put this show together since January under the guidance of drama director Shelly McCook, assistant director Michelle Hains and chorus director Vanessa Edwards.

 “My favorite part is that it’s a great opportunity to bring the community together,” McCook said. “The student performers and crews are working closely as a group; all are engaged and problem-solving. The parents volunteer after hours to build sets and props and take care of most logistics. All of us are working together to make this gift for the community.     

Both cast and crew have enjoyed the putting together the show. 

“I really like it because I get to do different fun things, like moving a trolley or a bench during the show, and get to work with my friends,” crew member Emanuel Smith said. 

The opportunities are not limited to the older students. 

“It has been very fun,” said Kaidon Morgan, a sixth grade cast member. “We get to make new friends. Everyone enjoys working together, learning the songs and dances, and helping each other.”    

Several of the performers are also members of the Junior Thespian Troupe which will compete at the International Thespian Conference at the University of Nebraska in June, after receiving a superior rating at the regional Junior Thespian Conference in February. 

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at autreymillchorus.com/sitr-jr-tickets.html. Shows begin at 7 p.m. at Autrey Mill Middle School, 4110 Old Alabama Road in Johns Creek. 

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