Willy Wonka Brings a Golden Ticket to NCU’s Theatre Program

Willy Wonka Brings a Golden Ticket to NCU’s Theatre Program

Wonka Featured

North Central’s theatre program solid “golden tickets” to their production of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Photo by Alisa Johnson.

Rave reviews come after two incredible weekends of performances of Willy Wonka

Written by Samantha Bergum and Meghan Bishop

Many numbers of the North Central community look forward to the theatre department’s productions each semester. This year they brought a childhood favorite of many to life, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. North Central Theatre put on a re-enactment of Roald Dahl’s Willy Wonka. People got a musical twist of a classic film.

Willy Wonka ran from Nov. 10 through Nov. 19. The performance went on for two weekends with many sold out shows. The cast was very diverse, with actors even in age.

“There were many people involved with the show who have never done theatre before. But that’s what makes it educational theatre,” said North Central senior Cameron Cornell. Wayne Matthews, assistant professor of fine arts at North Central, directed the production.

Some of the cast was from Maranatha Christian Academy with actors as young as sixth grade. A student from Maranatha Christian Academy played Charlie Bucket, a high demand role.

“Professor Matthews is amazing and taught a group of new actors how to put on a stunning production,” Cornell said.

It was a light-hearted show filled with humor along the way. Cornell played the lead, Willy Wonka, and gave the show a lot of life and fun right from the beginning.

“I was thrilled and terrified to play Willy Wonka,” Cornell said. “I never want to copy another artist, so I did my best to bring a fresh take to the part that would be true to Roald Dahl’s original story.”

Cornell graduates from North Central in early December. “It was very emotional doing my final production at North Central,” Cornell said. “It’s been a privilege getting to perform at North Central under Wayne’s direction and with some of the finest people I’ve ever met.”

Overall the show was one that is worth noting. The play used video projection to help create an animated experience to add to the set and props.

“The production ended up being a huge blast. Incredible crowds, the cast was so unified – truly a family, and kids who saw the show got to experience the magic of theatre. What could be better?” Cornell said.