MASON CITY | The Mason City High School Vocal Music Department will presents the 70th annual edition of The Follies, with performances this week.
The performances are 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 8; 8:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 10, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 11, at North Iowa Community Auditorium in Mason City.
The theme this year is “Millennial Music,” a salute to pop music from the 1990s through the present.
Selections include songs such as “This Is Me,” from the film “The Greatest Showman,” as well as recent hits from Bruno Mars and Justin Timberlake. There will be music for all ages to enjoy, from rock to jazz.
The production will feature a variety of ensembles and performing acts including three show choirs, two instrumental ensembles, dancers, vocalists and comedy skits. More than 225 students are involved in this year’s showcase of area talent.
“Follies is a wonderful educational experience for the students," said Joel Everist, director of choral activities for Mason City Community Schools, said in a news release.
Everist said hundreds of hours go in to preparing the show, as rehearsals begin in October.
Students are responsible for preparing, auditioning and staging the acts, as well as technical aspects of the show, Everist added.
Unofficially known as America’s longest running high school variety show, the Follies has its roots in productions that began at Mason City High School more than 100 years ago.
Meredith Willson composed tunes and performed for an early version of the school variety show in 1918.
Over the years the production has involved more than 20,000 students, under various names such as “Curtain Call” and “Footlight Fantasy,” until it took on its current format of the Follies in 1948.
Tickets are available in advance from Mason City High School's main office and the customer service desk at Mason City Hy-Vee stores.
Advance tickets are $7 for senior citizens/children under 12 and $9 for adults. Tickets are $8 and $10 at the door. Advance purchase is strongly encouraged as performances traditionally sell out.
Visit www.mchschoir.com for more information.