Carmen High at Spotlites International Theater, Edinburgh
August 8, 2016: Leah Lane, the daughter of Broadway producers Bonnie Comley and Stewart Lane, has traveled to Scotland to perform in “Carmen High” at The 69th annual Edinburgh Fringe Festival, which began this past Thursday. The previous Saturday on August 1 Ms. Lane performed in Fada: The House of Madness at the 23 annual Watermill Center Summer Gala, which is one of the most sought after social events of the Hampton’s Summer Season. This year more than 1000 guests attended.
Leah Lane (in center – in gray towel) with Carmen High cast
With hardly a chance to catch her breath Ms. Lane was off to Scotland to participate in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, after scoring a role in “Carmen High.” The Edinburgh Fringe has grown in stature since its inception in 1947 to become one of the largest arts festival in the world and will be around the city for the entire month of August.
Carmen High, conceived and directed by Stephanie Vlahos, opened the Spotlites International Theatre on August 4th. The new musical based on the Bizet opera is a theatrical mash up of opera, hip hop, original songs, and classical music. The story reinvents the opera of Carmen as an American high school experience told through the voices of gifted teenage performers. Like the original opera the new musical blends music with dialogue to tell the story.
The tale about a popular mean girl, who jokingly dates a high school outcast, is about fitting in and not fitting in, being popular and being bullied, while touching on themes like suicide, peer pressure, pop culture, friendship, isolation, and rape. In Carmen High the audience experiences diverse stories about the American High School experience as teenagers navigate the emotional minefield of high school, sort of like Glee with an edge.
In CARMEN HIGH, Carmen is a tough cheerleader focused on self-gratification, and she is also a bully. Her friends, who are part of the cheerleading and pep squads, both fear and admire her.
Georgian Mendes sings Carmen, and Grant Grayson bower plays Jose, the object of her affections. However, CARMEN HIGH is about the entire ensemble as well as its principal performers. The story, which is ultimately a tragedy takes us through the highs and lows of high school while reaching into the lives of other students and to experience their inner thoughts/desires which is a fascinating aspect of the productions – “inner monologues,” which are songs written by Lily Campbell, a young singer/songwriter, that take us into the interior soul of each character as each navigates the emotional terrain of high school.
Georgia Mendes (Carmen) & Grant Grayson Bower (Jose)
Carmen High is concept conceived by Stephanie Vlahos with his lyrics, and dialogue and featuring music from the opera by Bizet, along with original songs by The Faceless Muse, Kendra Celise, Lily Campbell, David Robinson and Scott Kelley. The musical is directed by Stephanie Vlahos with choreography by Scott Kelley, lighting by Jared Sayeg, and musical direction by And Galbach. The cast includes: Georgia Mendes, Grant Bower, Dominique Adapon, Darci Anderson, Mia Michaud, Amy Prochaska, Zane Sipotz, Charlie Smith, Chris James, Joe Riahi, Connor Bezark, Jack Zager, Naja Burton, Daniela Rodrigo, Paloma Mettler, Jackson Hatwan, Shelbie Wayne, Sara Watson, Leah Lane, T J Smith, Isaiah Mikael, Aidan Morvec, Sebastian de Klerk, and Maria Campo.
Carmen High cast
Carmen High runs daily August 4th through August 12 at 3:55p
Box Office : 0131 240 2784
Photos: Isabel Wells
Leah Lane @ The Watermill Center Gala – Photo Barry Gordin