Editor’s Disclaimer: This is a feature profile article on one of the musical leads. We are not endorsing one cast member or musical crew as a star over any other. A follow up article on the play will be written for another deadline and a photo story will be included featuring the overall production, including the choir, orchestra choreography and backstage tech crew. Please keep up with the Recorder for those updates.
A light illuminates the stage. A young man with glasses and light brown hair appears. There is a slight murmur among the crowd as he opens his mouth to sing. Suddenly, everyone falls silent. A sweet sound fills the air as the audience seems to be entranced in his voice. This young man’s name is Jared Dees and when he sings everybody listens.
Jared Dees is the male lead in the Fine Arts Department’s spring musical “Jekyll & Hyde” based on the classic story by Robert Louis Stephenson. The production, under the theatrical direction of Gloria Robinson, involves the entire Fine Arts department including the orchestra and choir.
Robinison said that while many talented students auditioned last semester, Dees fit the role best.
“It’s pretty surreal actually,” Dees said. “It still hasn’t quite kicked in.”
Co-lead and friend Corbyn Sprayberry who plays Jekyl’s fiancé Emma Carew, says that his humble personality is what separates him from the rest.
“Jared has the voice of an angel,” Sprayberry said. “Every time he sings we all go silent because we are so in awe.”
Dees, along with everyone else in the production, puts a lot of time and effort into perfecting his art. Between all the rehearsals for the musical and his commitments in choir, he relies heavily on time management.
“I never really have time to rest so I’m just always doing something trying to get things done,” he said.
Sprayberry said that their offstage friendship allows them to have more chemistry on stage.
“Being able to joke around with each other and have fun helps us to be comfortable and connected on stage,” she said.
With Dees’ junior year coming to a close, Robinson says his future is looking good.
“As with all our talented students, Jared has a bright future with Reagan productions,” Robinson said. “I see Jared working on his craft for a long time. He has an incredible voice and acting skills and he is a good dancer.”
Singing is one of Dee’s strengths, having received All-State honors in choir, however he is still a little unsure of what he wants to do post high school.
“After high school I’ve seen myself doing music. I could also see myself doing law or business because I really enjoy those,” Dees says. “It will be whatever God has for me.”
Whatever his future holds for him, he hopes his performance will leave him a better actor and singer than before.
“I wouldn’t rather have anyone besides him as my cast mate. He is a fantastic Jekyll and Hyde and he is going to make the show superb,” Sprayberry said.
You can see Dees and Sprayberry along with the rest of the cast and over a hundred choir, orchestra, and tech students, in “Jekyll & Hyde” February 19-22 at 7 p.m. in the auditorium. In addition to Robinson’s theatre direction, the choral is under the direction of Mary Cowart and Christian DeLaCruz, Chris Rodriquez is the Choreographer, James Kaiser is the Technical Director and Sixto Elizondo directs the orchestra.
Tickets can be purchased at www.rrhstheatre.com