The Westerville community is invited to follow the story of Dolly Gallagher Levi, a strong-willed matchmaker, as she travels to Yonkers, New York, to find a partner for the miserly "half-a-millionaire" Horace Vandergelder in "Hello, Dolly!"
Westerville Central High School will perform the classic musical at 7 p.m. Friday, May 3, and Saturday, May 4, and 3 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at 7118 Mount Royal Ave.
Stephanie Matushoneck, the show's producer and artistic director, said in the show, set in 1890s New York City, the title character, a bold and enchanting widow played by Melody Kloepfer, is a socialite-turned-matchmaker.
She said Levi's latest clients are the cantankerous Vandergelder, played by Adam Keith, and a young artist named Ambrose, played Jacob Miller, who is in love with Horace's niece, Ermengarde, played by Sarina Motts.
The widow's scheming soon involves Vandergelder's employees, played by Ethan Zink and Jack Dodson, as well as a New York hat maker, played by Bella Glaser, and her assistant, played by Maria Dalanno, as she tries to cover up her own romantic designs.
Kloepfer said the musical is a really exciting production.
"We have freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors," she said. "We have the biggest male cast we've ever had. It's super-inclusive. I think it's a really fun show. It's good for any age. It's family friendly."
Kloepfer said there's also some jokes for the adult audience.
Keith said "Hello, Dolly!" is an interesting show that is a classic but offers some modern elements as well.
"We've been working really hard on it," he said.
Matushoneck said she chose the show because she likes the students to experience classic musicals.
"They often don't get a chance to see an older piece unless it is being revived and then tours," Matushoneck said. "We announced our season last year and then found out 'Hello, Dolly!' will be in Columbus after we close."
She said the students love to see a show they've been in being performed by professionals.
Ryan Scarlata is directing Central's production.
The show's music director is Eric Neuenschwander; choreographer is Amanda Fannon Wischmeyer; technical director is Jude Berger; and stage manager is Katherine Ganobsik.
Tickets cost $10 and can be purchased at wchstheatre.net.