Oh what a week it was! It has been a fun-filled, exciting, three consecutive nights at Salesian College in Celbridge for the hosting of ‘Oh What a Night!’, a musical tribute to Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons! Each night (16-18 November 2016) was packed out, and the cast had everyone dancing, clapping, and singing along all night! It was indeed a professional production! The last evening was special as the curtain closed one last time on Friday Night – the grand finale. The audience lifted the roof as it showed its appreciation to all students and staff involved.
Congratulations to our cast of over sixty students, including girls from St Wolstan’s Community School, who gave an excellent performance. These were lead and directed by the fantastic teachers Ms Kelly, Ms. Tierney and Ms. Coleman. The leading parts were played by Daire Martin as Bob Gaudio, Shane Kennedy as Frankie Valli, Joe Weldon as Tommy Devitto and Odhran Brady as Nick Massi. The dedication and hard work from back stage crew, and costume department is also to be highly commended.
The sixth class students from the local primary schools in Celbridge also had the pleasure of attending a matinée performance of the show on Tuesday morning. Judging from the cheers and applause one could hear echoing around the school, they definitely enjoyed it.
The musical is an expression of the Salesian ethos of the school, as Don Bosco himself encouraged the use of music as a means of helping our young people develop their talents and express themselves. Fr Tadeusz Rozmus, the Regional Visitor currently in Ireland, attended the musical together with the Provincial Fr Michael Casey and was highly impressed.
The musical ‘Oh What a Night!’ is fashioned like a behind-the scenes documentary, using the four seasons – winter, spring, summer, fall – as a device to neatly tell the story of the group’s rise and fall – and subsequent rise. Each “season” was narrated and told from the point of view of one group member, as they trace the group’s turbulent history from its beginnings as a trio in the streets of New Jersey before they discovered Frankie Valli, then a teenager. But it was when they recruited songwriter Bob Gaudio that the Four Seasons conquered the charts. Their connections to the mob began to haunt them, which eventually led to the group’s breakup – and the rise of Valli as a solo star. The musical ends with the group’s induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. During the show people got a chance to re-live hit tunes like Walk Like a Man, Oh What a Night, Sherry and Big Girls Don’t Cry.
It was indeed a wonderful initiative; perhaps the comment of one of the parents sums it all up: What an amazing night! Such a professional production and performance! Better than any night out at the theatre; the schools should be proud of their talented teenagers and committed teachers. Well done.