St. Joseph High School Brings Student Theater Back with Spongebob Squarepants: The Broadway Musical

(Sponsored) The St. Joe’s community is anxiously awaiting this year’s curtain call as school theatrical productions were put on pause for the last few seasons due to the pandemic. This May, the wildly energetic drama club will kick off its theater resurgence with Spongebob Squarepants: The Broadway Musical.

When the Spongebob Squarepants musical appeared on Broadway for the first time, it opened to critical acclaim and earned 12 Tony Award nominations. The story surrounds square-shaped SpongeBob and the city of Bikini Bottom as they face annihilation of their undersea world. Just when all hope seems lost, an unexpected hero rises and takes center stage. The St. Joseph High School drama club is ecstatic about this spring’s production, the cast and crew working tirelessly in anticipation of opening night on May 5. The show will run all weekend through May 7.

What’s more, the admission office and musical director at St. Joe’s plan to invite over 250 elementary and middle school students to campus for an exclusive Dress Rehearsal on May 3 from 9:00-11:30am.

“The Drama Club is a place for every student to feel welcomed and accepted,” Fine Arts Department Chair Katie Cardillo said. “Theater skills relate to all aspects of our students' lives. They become better public speakers, more confident student leaders, and incredibly accepting of the varied personalities which make up the tapestry that is SJHS.”

Surely a fun show for all, the students have picked up right where they left off in 2019, generating new interest in the drama club and creating a diverse on-campus group. Over 100 students participate in the drama club each year, and this includes honors students, student council members, athletes, engineers and others, too, representing many of the talents within the SJHS community.

"Drama club is more than a club; it is a family who loves and accepts you no matter what; it truly is my home away from home. We are a group of dedicated students who put forth our best efforts, doing something we love, to make meaningful theater for all of the SJ community,” Mike Mancini said, a junior who will play the role of the mayor in the spring musical.

The high school is incredibly supportive of students who wish to pursue the arts in any of its forms, whether it be just in high school or beyond. Members of the drama club have access to a highly involved group of alumni who return to their alma mater to connect with current drama students, encouraging many who are interested to consider theater once they get to college. Over the past two years, the school already welcomed Evan DeBenedetto, a member of Katy Perry's dance ensemble at her Las Vegas Residency, Ed Vocolla, a writer for Rick & Morty and Last Man on Earth, and Daniel Foster, an actor in national commercials, film, and television.

Cardillo takes a lot of pride in her work with members of the drama club, preparing many for next steps after their high school graduation and for some, auditions for college. Several St. Joseph High School graduates have gone on to major in theatrical arts at New York University, Emerson College, UCONN, Temple University, Elon University, University of Edinburgh, and more.

“Entering high school can be daunting. The different sports, clubs, and extracurriculars seem overwhelming to someone who feels as if it will define the next four years of their life. I felt this way going into my freshman year. I didn’t know who my crowd would be, but I quickly found, by auditioning for the fall play on a whim, that I had a place in the Drama Club. The club transcended social barriers and all of a sudden, I had friends that weren’t even in my class. The environment of the club and joy of performing quickly blossomed into a passion for acting,” James McMahon said, a St. Joe’s graduate who has gone on to study theater at Syracuse University.

To learn more about St. Joseph High School and its various arts programs, click here.