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Peter and the Starcatcher

The cast of Peter and the Starcatcher taking a bow
Lana Jepsen
The cast of Peter and the Starcatcher taking a bow

The story of Peter Pan, the boy who never wants to grow up, and the world of Neverland, a world of faith, trust, and pixie dust, is a beloved childhood favorite for many. From the 1953 Disney classic, Peter Pan, to Gold Masque’s own 2018 production of Peter and Wendy – the story of Peter Pan never gets old. Literally. 


This year’s incredible cast truly shined in Ramapo’s winter production of Peter and the Starcatcher, with Kayla Kanfke as Boy/Peter, Tyler Breene as Smee, Leonardo Fornasieri as Lord Leonard Aster, Samuel Ornstein as Blackstache, Chloe Maurice as Slank, Addison Palmer as Captain Robert Falcon Scott, Angelina Bruno as Molly Aster, Alexis Ulmer as Prentiss, Isabella Leoce as Ted, Ellison Grant as Mrs. Bumbrake, Jeneyln Valdivia as Alf, Marrisa Colengelo as Teacher/Grempkin, Katherine Kuhe as Fighting Prawn, Deanna Drob as Hawking Clam, Abigail Andro as Mack, Alyssa Del Valle as Sanchez, Lillian Cirrito as Mr. Grin Puppeteer/Ensemble, Daniela Pinerio as Pupperter/Ensemble, and Nicolette Pecorelli as Ensemble. 


With the help of Nick Bernard (set design, set construction, puppet design, lighting design, sound design, producer), Gianna Grossso (choreographer), Nicolas Hendrickson (assistant director, production stage manager), Valentina D’Angelo (assistant stage manager), Hayden Tarr (assistant stage manager), Emily Reitter (music director), and Rebecca Corrado (GoldMasque advisor, producer, director, set construction, costume design, dialects), the shows set, costumes, and effects were every bit as impressive as the performers themselves. 


Directed by Ms. Corrado, Peter and the Starcatcher is based on the 2004 novel Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. It provides a background for J. M. Barrie’s original characters – Peter, Captain Hook, and Tinkerbell, and serves as a prequel to Peter and Wendy. (Musical Theatre International). Nicolas Hendrickson, a Senior at Ramapo and the Assistant Director and the Production Stage Manager explained that he believed the story was truly about friendship, and using that connection to overcome adversity. 


These meaningful connections are apparent within the cast of Peter and the Starcatcher, about which, Kayla Kanefke, who plays the lead role of Boy/Peter, commented  “Doing Gold Masque and being both on stage and off has taught me so many valuable skills and has given me so many memories. And for those who are scared to step out on stage in front of an audience, I was too, and I still am, but I promise that the lights are so bright you cannot see anyone. And suddenly it becomes the connections that you create with the people/characters on stage that encourage you to stay in the moment and enjoy all the little details in life.”


Ms. Corrado drew her inspiration for this year’s play from her university, who put it on while she was there, although she did not participate. “I wasn’t in it, but I saw it and I really, really liked it. And it has been a show that has been in the back of my head for years, and I truly felt like this year we had the cast to be able to pull it off.”  Despite the abundance of new students this fall, Mrs. Corrado believed that it ultimately benefited the quality of the show. The casting process included online auditions and callbacks, of which Ms. Corrado commented “It was probably the hardest show ever to cast. I came into it with an idea of who could potentially play this, and everybody was great.”


The undeniable talent of this cast was expressed by Nicolas Hendrickson. He remarked, “I think that we have a super gifted cast and crew and production team that put so much work into this show, and I am incredibly proud of all of the hard work that so many of them put into this production.”


While recent Ramapo productions tended to have dealt with heavier themes or messages, including Urinetown, Girls in a Boat, and Godspell – Ms. Corrado commented that with Peter and the Starcatcher, the team took a refreshingly lighthearted and more humorous approach. 


Described by Ramapo algebra teacher Ms. Biunno as “fun” and “heartwarming,” Peter and the Starcatcher was undoubtedly a product of the members of Ramapo GoldMasque’s hard work, commitment, and passion, and sure to be only the beginning of a fantastic year of performances to come. 


A big congratulations to the cast and crew of Peter and the Starcatcher… and get excited for Ms. Corrado’s upcoming spring musical, The Drowsy Chaperone!

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