Schenectady High’s Little Shop of Horrors brings life to a Cult Classic


Editors Note: The author, Frederick Durocher, is a student of Schenectady High School and a member of Blue Roses. Nippertown encourages participation in the arts at every age and every level and encourages supporting young musicians, actors, and journalists. Together we make our creative community stronger.

Little Shop of Horrors is a cult classic musical from 1982. Over time the strange story of a man being overcome by greed has led to several adaptations. While the story about a man-eating plant may seem weird to general audiences, it instantly became a piece of pop culture history. So it’s no wonder that it’s been performed at several theaters across the world.  And now it’s time for Blue Roses to give it a try. 

Blue Roses is a theater company set inside Schenectady High School. It’s been running for several years, and it’s currently being led by Leah Depeche and Peter Muste. Blue Roses can be known for many different things in terms of theater. It could be for their use of plays written by Schenectady High students. Or their mature and thought-provoking plays. But they have always been known for their musicals. From Hairspray to Sister act, Blue roses have performed a plethora of iconic musicals. Each year a new batch of theater students helps keep the program and shows alive. One of the biggest challenges Blue roses had to face was covid 19. I joined Blue roses during my freshman year, which was entirely virtual. While it was hard, they found a way to involve the students still and help them have a creative outlet during one of the hardest school years imaginable. Luckily over time, Blue Roses was able to recover and truly return to its original strength. No performance showed that more than our performance of Clue earlier in the school year. Seeing how packed it truly showed that Blue roses have an impact on the community. And now, it’s time for us to show that impact again with Little Shop. 

We’ve been working on Little Shop of Horrors for almost four months, and it’s been an incredible experience for all of us.  While it’s been challenging, the challenge has made us better performers. We also have amazing puppeteers who are helping bring the plant alive. We have a lot of experienced blue roses performers and some newcomers. We still have the momentum from popular shows we did this year, like Clue and Passage. The community around Blue roses is a loving homelike community that helps musicals thrive. We’ve also had help from several other teachers. Ms. Redick and Ms. Los taught us the dance choreography, Ms. Lamb helped with the larger chorus numbers, and Mr. Gleason helped with the pit. We have so many moving parts that are all making this musical come together. With all the parts working, we can have a truly amazing show. 

“I was kinda thrown into becoming a stage manager,” said Anjali Peters. Anjali is a senior at Schenectady High School, and Little Shop is her 3rd show stage managing. Previous shows included Everybody, which was performed during the 2021-2022 season, and Clue, which was performed last fall. She was previously a running crew, but she was pushed into new territory with stage managing. And since I’ve been in all the shows she’s stage-managed, I can tell you she’s the best of the best. “It’s an outlet in some way, even though I’m not on stage acting. It still helps with being more confident with other people and that sense of professionalism.” We can see how the sense of community Blue roses has affected everyone. It truly is a community and can even feel like a second home. You can also see how we use that sense of community to improve our show day after day. 

Blue Roses has performed several amazing plays and musicals, and Little Shop of Horrors will not be an exception. The community around the theater company has used its heart to create something truly special. Who knew a show about a man-eating plant could become a famous musical? I didn’t. But I know Blue Roses will help make it truly amazing.

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