Preview: Seneca Valley rehearses 'Beauty and the Beast'

by: Kim Raguza Updated:

Seneca Valley High School students rehearse for their spring musical "Beauty and the Beast."
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Seneca Valley High School will be performing “Beauty and the Beast” this spring.

View Rehearsal Photos

With less than a week until opening night, it’s clear the students' hard work over the past couple of months is going to pay off. The pyrotechnics, objects flying through the theater and elaborate costumes only add to the large amount of talent the students display.

Stephen Santa, director of “Beauty and the Beast,” said he chose the show because it’s family friendly and magically pleasing.

“We knew the students would have a blast performing in such a popular show,” he said. 

What really makes directing a show enjoyable for him is the cast’s personality and laughter.

“Laughter is so important on long rehearsals and stressful situations,” said Santa.

The success of this show can be amounted to Santa’s strong passion for theater. He is in his third year teaching at Seneca Valley but has directed all over the Pittsburgh region. He is also an employee of the Pittsburgh CLO, a non-profit theater.

Lead Kristin Carmella will surely captivate the audience with her performance of Belle. She explains that although playing a princess is a dream, it can be challenging to maintain the audience’s preconceived expectations of Belle while making it her own.

Carmella, who has been involved in the arts since age five, loves participating in Seneca Valley’s musicals.

“They always turn out to be spectacular and are so successful,” she said.

Acting alongside of Carmella is Ben Paget, who plays the Beast. Paget’s transformation into the beast is aided by a professional make-up team and a huge wig. His thrilling performance will win your heart as he transforms from a monster to a prince.

Seneca Valley’s “Beauty and the Beast” will run February 24-26 and March 2-3.