FROM THE BACK ROW: She's Flying!

Posted on July 13th, 2012

Hey DSM Fans!

Yesterday, Luke and I were given the chance to take part in PETER PAN media day here at the Music Hall at Fair Park!   We got to interview cast members and watch as Cathy Rigby gave flying lessons to a few lucky people, including our very own: Michael Jenkins.  

Michael Jenkins & Cathy Rigby

We found out that Emily Emmett (named Best Actress at DSM’s High School Musical Theatre Awards) grew up watching the video of Cathy Rigby as PETER PAN, and she has also played Peter.  Needless to say, she is a huge fan of both the show and Cathy.  So what did we do?  We invited her to hang out with us for the day!

Luke, Emily & Haley

After finishing our cast interviews [Coming Soon!], we headed for the theater to take in some good, old-fashioned flying lessons.  As we opened the theater doors, a starry blue sky expanded across our horizon.  The sight caused Emily to squeak, “Oh my gosh! Stars!” as she hurried through the doorway.  Inside, Cathy was teaching a few of our local news anchors how to soar high above the stage.  Following her instruction to “think lovely thoughts,” and a shower of fairy dust, they were hoisted into the air in a quick fluid motion.  It seems the secret to flying as gracefully as Cathy is remembering to arch your back. – For those of you who plan on flying to Neverland in the near future…

Between lessons, Cathy moved to the opposite side of the stage for interviews.  My ears perked up when I heard her mention the DSM High School Musical Theater Awards.  (Back in May, Cathy presented Emily with the award for Best Actress.) Emily and I inched closer and closer until we were leaning against the orchestra pit, intently listening and a little in awe of our proximity to the  Tony Award® nominee.

Eventually, I was told to “take Emily up there!”  Onstage, we shuffled through a pile of fairy dust, took a closer look at the flying system’s ropes and pulleys, and Emily gave her best PETER PAN pose for a photo.  Next thing I know, Cathy is waving her over! They stood arm in arm as Cathy showered her with praise and told bystanders that she’s glad she didn’t have to compete with someone as talented as Emily is.  Emily answered with a very astonished “thank you,” and then voiced her mutual admiration.

Emily and Cathy Rigby

Emily and Cathy Rigby

Much to everyone’s surprise, Cathy gave an impromptu demonstration of Peter Pan’s audience fly-over.  In a flash, she launched into the air.  As my eyes followed a sparkling rain of fairy dust from Cathy, down to the empty seats, I discovered Emily- alone in the center of the downpour- with her palms up, eyes squinting at the sky, and a smile that could outshine Tinker Bell any day.

-DSM Haley