This year's spring musical at Olentangy Liberty High School is an "old show" or "kind of a new show" or "an update of an old show," said assistant director Doug O'Neal.

This year's spring musical at Olentangy Liberty High School is an "old show" or "kind of a new show" or "an update of an old show," said assistant director Doug O'Neal.

However you classify it, he said, Liberty's production of "Thoroughly Modern Millie" promises to be fun, with a little "cheese" thrown in.

Four performances are scheduled: May 1-3 at 7:30 p.m. and May 4 at 1:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for students. Senior citizens with district reward cards get in free. Reservations can be made by calling (740) 657-4291.

"Thoroughly Modern Millie" was made into a film starring Julie Andrews, Carol Channing and Mary Tyler Moore. The film was updated for the stage in the early 2000s, O'Neal said.

With costs rising for new shows, a lot of Broadway houses are taking successful movies and turning them into stage musicals, he said, such as "Footloose" and "Cry Baby."

While much of the music is new, the plot line is pretty much the same. A girl from the Midwest comes to New York in the 1920s looking for "the big lights and glitz" and a husband, he said. The story is about what happens along the way and how Millie changes her mind about what is important in life, "making it a very endearing story."

"It's a fun show a throw-back show," said director Dan Skrovan. "It's not trying to send a message, not trying to have a big, huge overriding theme, not that there aren't themes in it. It's a story of how the city will chew you up and spit you out if you're not careful."

Because the city is the overriding theme, the skyline of New York City will be visible on stage throughout the entire show, he said. The set is being designed with a towering background of skyscrapers, with set changes happening in front of the tall buildings, O'Neal said.

The music is difficult, O'Neal said. Many of the songs are in operetta-style, with a few Gilbert and Sullivan "patter" songs thrown in.

Patter songs are fast, and the words are thrown off the tip of the tongue of the person singing them, he said.

There also is a lot of dancing, tap included.

Scott Stauffer plays Trevor Graydon and has one of the patter songs.

"When I first heard it, I thought it was ridiculous and whoever had to sing it wouldn't be having much fun," he said. Then he found out that someone was him.

"I'm trying hard to do it right, spending a lot of time singing it over and over."

Skrovan said timing is important. The show is full of punch lines interspersed between the singing. "It's punch line, after punch line, after punch lines with the music underneath," he said. The music stops, the punch line is given, and the music starts again, over and over."

The movie was a tribute to silent movies, he said, and is still a tribute to the "old flashy style of movies where the villain wore black and the pretty girl needed rescuing, although in this show she is the one doing the rescuing," he said.

Jenny Hesseltine is cast as Millie.

"I was ecstatic," she said. "Millie is a really, really determined woman who comes to New York and thinks she's going to marry her boss. It unfolds from there and tells about the people she meets and the adventures she goes on.

"I love the show, even all the cheesiness," Hesseltine said. "The music is tough with all of the key and speed changes. ... The cast is great. ... Everybody is playing a role I can see them playing."

Members of the cast are JD Caudill as Jimmy Smith, Kylie Kirksey as Ruth, Hannah Berry as Gloria, Zoara Christman as Rita, Ashley Stoerkel as Alice, Lauren Quelette as Cora, Ashley Hufford as Lucille, Caitie Yamarick as Ethel Peas, Jordan Millen as Mrs. Meers, Kara White as Miss Dorothy Brown, Jared Joseph as Ching Ho, Andrew Lin as Bun Foo, Susie Wroble as Miss Flannery, Layne Raisch as The Pearl Lady, Brad Ingles as The Letch, Alex Kaufman as Policeman, Jaclyn Hirsch as Muzzy Van Hossmere, Brandon Rivington as George Gershwin, Brad Ingles as Ira Gershwin, Steph Hearon as Dorothy Parker, Nate Wahl as Rodney, Doug Brubaker as Kenneth, Megan Boedicker as Daphne and Brad Ingles as Dexter.

Also appearing are Layne Raisch, Chelsea Ciambrone, Zoara Christman as speed typists, Caitie Yamarick, Danielle Sandahl, Madelyn Kelly and Jill Evans as stenographers; Morgan Woodard, Hannah Zipf, Sarah Zipf and Amber Everhart as file clerks; Jill Evans, Chelsea Ciambrone and Caitie Yamarick as party guests; Ashley Hufford and Alex Kaufman as dishwashers; Nate Wahl, Ryan Menges, Brandon Rivington, Doug Brubaker, Ryan Ransaw and Andrew Lingrel as Muzzy's Boys; and Alexandra Epervary as Mathilde, Lexi Zaas, Tori Barger, Katie Allen, Gabbie Brown, Molly Osmon, Jessie Johnson and Katy Basore as the ensemble.

The choreographer for the show is Michael Birkas and the dance captain is Layne Raisch. The music director is Cheridy Keller and the business director is Ellie Huber. Dave Rathje is the technical director. Other tech crew members are Aaron Capretta, house manager; Jordan Millen, stage manager; Alexa Hirsch, assistant stage manager; Ethan Johns, production manager; Andrea Perry, assistant production manager; and Megan Vitullo, stylist. Stage crew members are Courtney Deruy, Nikki Dustheimer, Christy Green, Austin Hufford, Michael Bentencourt and Brit Wanstrath.