Upsala’s presentation of ‘Willy Wonka’ a sweet mix of music, drama and creative sets

Combining a sweet mix of music, drama and creative sets, the Upsala School Drama Club treated three audiences to Roald Dahl’s “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Candy Factory” April 13-15, in the Upsala School Auditorium. Under the direction of Dan and Denise Cheney, the cast of 41 students grades 7-12 performed what the Cheneys described as “by far the most complex production we’ve attempted during our time in Upsala.” The story line revolves around the mysterious and eccentric candy maker Willy Wonka and his contest where five lucky children find golden tickets and receive a tour of his wonderful factory and a lifetime supply of chocolate. In the end Wonka was actually conducting a character test to find the right individual to assume his cholocate empire. In addition to a dazzling stage set, special effects included a chocolate discharge chute, an inflatable blueberry costume, flying Buckets, a nut testing machine, a lighted boat, a shrinking device, and a space ship. Pictured are (from left): Nate Schumer (August Gloop), Kimmy Mrozek (Mrs. Gloop), Bekha Scepaniak (Veruca Salt), Thomas Ripplinger (Mr. Salt), Josiah Lojovich (Willy Wonka), Israil Pundsack (Grandpa Joe), Brook Westrich (Mick Teavee), Danica Cheney (Violet Beauregarde), Matt Abeler (Charlie Bucket) and Katie Prokott (Mrs. Teavee).