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Lessons Learned In Musical Production

Cast performing on stage aren’t the only students learning skills in the Okawville High Drama Club production of “Mamma Mia”.

Students behind the sound system, video recording, and lighting are also learning the technology of theater, said Technical Director Fred Klapetzky.

“That skill opens doors to college scholarships, he said. “Finding actors and singers is much easier than finding people who can do sound, recording, and lighting,” he said.

While Klapetzky has not seen the Okawville grads go on to careers in that field, he has seen numerous students go onto  technology/engineering careers.

Skills learned in the theater, such, as spatial awareness, learning to work in analog and digital technology , practical application of theory, the ability to discern the practical application of theory, i.e., hearing and knowing what doesn’t sound right, transfer to technology and engineering education. 

Klapetzky has done the Drama Club volunteer work for about 20 years. He came on board when former directors Jane Ford and Carol Brockmann asked him to assist in their productions.

Klapetzky attends most of the practices, and even arranges travel with his business, A Going Concern, around the play schedule. 

Musical Director Amy Welch is appreciative of the audio/visual volunteers. “Fred and his group are incredibly essential to our show,” she said. “Without them, we couldn’t produce such a fantastic show!”

Ownership of the lighting, sound system, and video recording systems are a mix of the Unit School District, Zion United Church of Christ in Addieville, and Klapetzky. “It’s good to have multiple uses because of the investment,” he said. 

Assistant Gared Seats helps in the final week of rehearsals and at the performances. He is the video producer for Zion’s live streams and was enlisted to help at school.

The 2006 Okawville High grad who works in cyber security from his home in rural Nashville  said that he is glad to have the opportunity to give back to  the school. He also likes seeing the productions. “The talent in this small school is phenomenal,” he said.

Senior Kyle Schwab and his brother, Ryan, a freshman, and Joey Kinzel are manning the spotlights. Sara Cook, the student technical manager, operates the sound system, the music tracks, and helps train anyone assisting in Tech Crew. 

Mamma Mia Cast

Bella Welch – Donna

Madi Wienstroer – Rosie

Megan Rennegarbe – Tanya

Maci Wolf – Sophia

Ellie Frederking – Lisa

Hannah Miller- Ali

Jared Juenger – Sam

Jacob Funk -Harry

Rylan Nelson- Bill

Thor Gavin – Sky

Bennett Krohne – Pepper

Calvin Maynard – Eddie


Paige Riechmann, Lynssie Talley, Annie Culli,  Ady Harre, Taylor Hettenhausen, Mallory Bening, Maggie Sawicki,  Tyne Moore, Laura Cook, Jenna Hackstadt, Caleigh Friedrich, Claire Dulle, Paige Kolweier, Madi Epplin, Payton Meier, Kaylyn Cragen, Madison Gogolek, KateLyn Borrenpohl, Caroline Tepe, Lily Helbig, Alexis Jarden Maddie Rennegarbe, Grant Moody, Isaiah Auer

Crew Members 

Student Sound Manager: Sarah Cook.

Student Light Manager Kyle Schwab

Light Crew: Joey Kinzel, Ryan Schwab

Makep-Up: Courtney Klasing

Choreographer: Caleigh Friedrich

Backstage managers: Jordyn Heckert, Briley Rhodes

Backstage crew: Braxton Rennegarbe, Rylan Senior

Director: Amy Welch

Technical Director Fred Klapsetzky

Assistant Music Director Mary Niemeyer

Tickets for Saturday and Sunday can be purchased at the door or the or the Drama Club FB page. Friday is sold out.

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