Music can impact the heart in so many ways,” says Catrina Contini one of the six cast members of Beehive: the 60s Musical, now playing at Cabrillo Stage. “I believe that this show not only honors the women of the 60s, but gives insight to what music means to each and every one of us.”
Catrina reports that working with a small cast has required teamwork and a 100% commitment. “Every girl in this show is so talented. It is inspiring to be surrounded by such beautiful, hard-working souls” who have spent many late nights, “studying music and going over choreography so that it is precisely executed and honors the artists we acknowledge.”
Catrina sparkles on stage and is thoroughly delightful in her rendition of One Fine Day originally performed by the Chiffons in 1963. She hopes the show will encourage people to Make Their Own Kind of Music and “to stand up for what is right and what makes them happy!”
Kiana Hamzehi, Mimi in last season’s production of RENT, feels strongly about the camaraderie of the cast and says “I love that together we empower each other while singing this fun music.” Her vocal strength shines in Tina Turner’s River Deep Mountain High and Proud Mary. “It’s a lot of hard work, but my back up dancers and I are having a blast up there!” Kiana acknowledges that staying true to the period was challenging for the young cast, citing a frequent note from the director, Gary John La Rosa: “Too Contemporary!”
The rehearsal process required studying research materials and a comprehensive glossary to be able to present the music with honesty and integrity. Kiana feels the music of the 60s is timeless. You may not think of it as “hip”, she says, but if you can let go of any “stigmas or attitudes about previous decades, you can come to the show and have a truly great time, even if you’ve never heard this music before.”
Cast member Lindsey Chester, Founder and Executive Director of All About Theatre feels it “an honor and a privilege to represent some of the most pivotal artists of the 1960s. To sing and portray Janis Joplin is beyond mind blowing to me.” Lindsey describes the experience of getting to know the young Joplin, her struggles and her liberation through music as “an out of this world experience.”
She attacks Joplin’s songs with “a sense of reckless abandon” and lets the music take her on a journey. She gets great enjoyment working with the “strong, dynamic and passionate women” that make up the BEEHIVE cast and notes her fondness for the hauntingly powerful song Abraham, Martin and John, a tribute to our country’s leaders who died too young. This remarkable performance is not to be missed.
Jennifer Taylor Daniels with her rich, warm voice returns to Cabrillo Stage for her fifth season. Aside from the challenge of having to dance in heels, Jennifer has greatly enjoyed bringing this show to life and hopes that the audience will feel “the power of the music to define us and change us.”
Sadie Rose first performed with Cabrillo Stage as a munchkin in THE WIZARD OF OZ, and most recently as Maureen in RENT. She has enjoyed getting into the feel of the 60s music and it clearly shows in her performance. From the lightness of It’s My Party to the strength of You Don’t Own Me, Sadie nails it!
Society’s Child by Janis Ian is a favorite of Jessica Pierini who feels “It is truly special to be alone on stage with just the band behind you, baring your soul to the audience.” The number’s staging has a stark simplicity compared to the other upbeat and choreographed numbers.
Its music shifts from the lighthearted numbers to a much deeper song that speaks to the battle for equality, which continues to this day. Jessica’s beautiful rendition will pull on your heart strings. She also enjoys singing Respect stating that, “it’s an empowering moment for the cast. We really connect with one another, and it ends the show on a high note!”
All of the cast members express how good it feels to be in a show that honors the artistry, beauty, and complexity of women. As Lindsey Chester said, “Representing a decade where women found their voices and made profound changes is a strong reminder of how far we’ve come.” May the progress and beautiful music continue!
Beehive, The 60s Musical runs June 27th through July 14th at the Cabrillo Crocker Theater, 6500 Soquel Drive in Aptos. Evening performances begin at 7:30 p.m. and matinees at 2 p.m. Following the June 30 performance join the Directors and Cast for a Q&A on Beehive. Purchase tickets online at www.cabrillostage.com or at the box office 831-479-6154.