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Out of the Cold: Onto The Island

The Kettle Moraine School for Arts and Performance is setting sail for an island full of joyous music, colorful dancing, and an ending you will never see coming!
Once on This Island is a Caribbean folktale loosely based off of Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid. "This show was chosen for the flexible cast, minimal set, and strong curricular ties to academic content. Students are able to find academic connections with coursework in literature, world history, world cultures, psychology, and environmental sciences," says Isa Hofbauer, a member of the production team. Once on This Island follows the peasant orphan Ti Moune on a quest for love, where she was guided by four gods. With music heavily inspired by the Caribbean islands and dance that will make everyone in the audience want to join in, this musical is one that cannot be missed!  
"As this show is a folktale, it allows for each area of the production (i.e. cast, set crew, costume crew) to have space to be creative (such as designs and acting). It is very fun to find cohesive, creative ways when producing a show!" says Hofbauer. Students had the chance to be involved in more than just the acting; some students directed the choreography for the entire show. Due to their extensive dance experience, Lizzie Hitchcock, Tamsin Olson, and Claire Vock were heavily involved in the teaching of the choreography of the show. "I tried to incorporate many styles and formations, giving everyone a chance to shine. It was a great teaching experience, and I hope the audience and cast members alike enjoy!" says Olson.
All the songs in this musical have a unique feel about them. "The music style has a Caribbean feel - contemporary, very rhythmic, a lot of syncopation and many up tempo numbers.  Each number is so unique - very fun!" Says Music mentor Ms. Schwingle.    
The cast and crew made sure to get the word out about the musical by traveling to different elementary schools to put on a performance in order to market the show. "We picked two Wednesdays where the cast went to all KM elementary schools excluding Cushing, because of their schedule, as well as Three Pillars. The cast usually performs a couple songs/dances from the show during these 20 performances," says Hofbauer.
Tickets can be purchased online for Once on This Island at, or at the door. Ticket prices are $12 for adults and $10 for seniors and K-12 students. Special $1 off discount price for all KMHS Campus staff and students on Thursday night.
Ali Connell
February, 2017