New Castle News

Local News

March 6, 2013

Photo Gallery, Story: ‘Ease on down road’ to see ‘The Wiz’

NEW CASTLE — When the curtain goes up Friday night at New Castle High School, Matt Priscilla will be attending his first play.

By the way, he also will be starring in it.

Priscilla, a senior, is cast as the scarecrow in “The Wiz,” a musical based on “The Wonderful Wizard Of Oz” by L. Frank Baum.

Performances will be 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $7 for adults and $5  for students.

“It’s been great fun,” said Priscilla, who decided to try out this year. He didn’t audition for a particular part, leaving that up to the director.

“I didn’t go to last year’s play (“High School Musical”), but all the kids were talking about it,” he said.

While he has never before acted, Matt has performed before an audience. He is a guitarist and singer for an alternative pop/punk rock band called “Drop The Act.”

Karmin Dando and Joye Piscitella are directing their fifth spring musical at New Castle High. “Matt had a phenominal audition,” Dando said. “He’s so talented and embodies the part of the scarecrow.”

Priscilla is playing the role made famous by the late Michael Jackson in the 1978 film version.

“That’s a little intimidating,” said Priscilla, who plans to study business and finance next year at Robert Morris University. “I like how my character is portrayed. He’s intelligent, but doesn’t know it.”

Priscilla said singing “I was Born on the Day before Yesterday” is a personal highlight of the play.

While Priscilla is a newcomer, Allyson Hood is a decorated veteran.

The outgoing Hood, also a senior, believed she was more suited to playing the role of Evillene, the bad witch, but ended up at the other end of the spectrum, portraying Dorothy

Dando said Hood is comfortable in almost any role. “She’s played just about every thing you can imagine,” Dando said. “Allyson is in every scene and she is an incredible actress.”

“I always like to make the best first impression I can,” said Hood, who wants to major in communications and lists Point Park, Kent State and Slippery Rock as her tops college choices.

As an underclassman, Hood said she went to more experience performers to seek advice. “Now they are coming up to me,” she said. Hood said her favorite song in the production is “Home.”

“I love this show because the music is so much fun,” said Dando.

There were some challenges, too, like figuring out how to melt a witch and putting students on their knees and on wheels to protray Munchkins.

The response during audition was so large that 50 students could not be accomodated and had to be turned away.

“That’s never happened before,” Dando said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local News
  • SRU1.jpg Digital days of yore: SRU students map out Lawrence County’s past online

    Students taking Dr. Aaron Cowan’s history course at Slippery Rock University have helped put Lawrence County on the map. To be more specific, they’ve put photographs of some significant people, places and events on a virtual map of Lawrence County.

    April 25, 2014 2 Photos

  • C141QP06010C.TIF City begins new pothole strategy

    New Castle’s public works department instituted a new game plan this week to fill potholes throughout the city. Mayor Anthony Mastrangelo said as of Monday, public works director Michael Rooney has assigned two crews to fix potholes.

    April 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • 06.jpg Photo Gallery, Cast List, Preview: New Castle to present ‘Footloose’

    Generations will clash once again when New Castle High students perform their 2014 spring musical this week. But that’s just what “Footloose” intends.

    April 23, 2014 8 Photos

  • school.jpg Board lengthens business manager contract

    The New Castle Area School Board has approved a five-year contract for district business manager Joseph Ambrosini.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • school.jpg George Washington renovations planned

    The New Castle Area School District is embarking on more improvements at the George Washington Intermediate School. At its meeting last week, the school board voted 8-0 to hire Eckles Architecture and Engineering to provide professional services for alterations and upgrades to the former swimming pool area of the school.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Union Township buys backhoe

    Union Township has a new backhoe in service. The supervisors bought the equipment recently to replace an 11-year-old backhoe.

    April 22, 2014

  • Commissioners to meet in Ellwood City

    The April 29 meeting of the Lawrence County commissioners will begin at noon at the Ellwood City Borough building.

    April 22, 2014

  • 06.jpg Photo Gallery, Story: Clifton Flat hosts annual egg hunt

    With three crosses standing outside Clifton Flat Alliance Church on Saturday, there could be no mistaking that it was Easter.

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Pride.tiff New Castle Schools: Second-grader recognized for reading 200 books

    Alexandra Browne of New Castle could very well be Lawrence County’s youngest bookworm. The petite, curly-haired 8-year-old was summoned to the New Castle school board meeting Monday with her parents, Rochelle and Ted Browne, to receive the district’s Pride and Promise award for April.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hilcorp a partner in vo-tech shale course

    A shale drilling company’s contribution to the vo-tech school will help fund a curriculum for careers in that field.

    April 19, 2014