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Corruption and Greed at Madison

Spring musical portrays the glitter and sleaziness of the Jazz Age.

Greed. Corruption. Fame. These are all elements of James Madison High School latest production, Chicago.

Chicago, a recent Broadway revival as well as an Academy award-winning movie, takes place in the Jazz Age 1920s. The musical, infused with vaudeville-influenced singing and dancing, is about two rivaling women, both in prison accused of murder, their lawyer, and the women's ambition for notoriety.

For Madison's production, 46 students are involved in the cast, 22 in the band, and over 75 on backstage crews.

"It's been totally amazing," said freshman Kasey Dailey, who portrays Roxie Hart, one of the leads. "Everything about it-the costumes…This play just has everything."

Fellow cast member, senior Anna Bridgforth, agreed. Anna plays Velma, Roxie's rival.

"I like everybody in the cast. Everyone gets along really well," Anna said.

For senior Nate Baldwin, one of students playing the unscrupulous lawyer Billy, acting outside of his normal personality has been one the aspects he's enjoyed about the production.

"The fact that he thinks he's better than everyone else," Nate said, adding that he gets to scream at people. "He definitely has an ego problem, and it's been fun to explore that."

Cast and crew encourage community members to see the spring musical, which incorporates multimedia into the performance.

"The singing and dancing is immensely strong," said director and theater teacher Natalie Vandever.

Chicago runs from May 1 to 4, with showtimes at 7 p.m. on May 1 to 3, May 4 at 2 p.m., and with an additional showtime of 2 p.m. on May 3. Tickets are $6 in advance and $8 at the door. Tickets may also be reserved online at www.madisondrama.com. James Madison High School is located at 2500 James Madison Drive, Vienna.