For its winter production, the Hilton Head Preparatory School Performing Arts Department is presenting the satirical musical comedy "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels." The show opens Feb. 16 at Hilton Head Island High School Visual and Performing Arts Center, 70 Wilborn Road, Hilton Head Island.
"We wanted to perform a show that contrasted from our classic fall production, 'The Sound of Music,'" said, Benjamin Wolfe, director of performing arts at the school. "Other than the fact that they are both musicals and contain a healthy amount of yodeling, it's there that the similarities end. 'Dirty Rotten Scoundrels' is a contemporary, slightly irreverent comedy with a lot of dancing, singing and, ultimately, fun."
Based on the 1988 hit film starring Steve Martin and Michael Caine, the production centers on two competing con men living on the French Riviera. At first, the suave and experienced Lawrence Jameson takes the rookie con man, Freddy, under his wing. But soon, Freddy tries to compete directly with his mentor. The competition comes to a peak when they agree that the first con man to extract $50,000 from thele heiress, Christine Colgate, wins and the other must leave town forever.
The cast includes 27 performers, who are supported by a full orchestra from around Beaufort County, led by musical director Tim Reynolds. Reynolds also is the director of the Hilton Head Choral Society.
Choreographer Kathleen Watkins returns to Hilton Head Prep, bringing her years of experience -- including work as dance captain in the Broadway cast of "Fosse" -- in dance instruction to the cast.
Wolfe noted the production's level of difficulty saying, "Set changes are numerous with 25 location changes throughout. One number changes location seven times during the song."
Some new faces will be in the spotlight in "Dirty Rotten Scoundrels." Senior Tyler Williams plays Freddy. Brothers Adam and Mark Oppenheimer, a senior and junior respectively, are leads in the production as well.
Though some lines have been edited and toned down from the Broadway version to be more appropriate for a high school performance, this production nevertheless carries a PG-13 rating, due to some adult language, situations and innuendo.