Joy and rock ‘n’ roll: ‘School of Rock’ wows DPAC audiences

By Rachel Teseneer
Times-News correspondent

   DURHAM — The Durham Performing Arts Center (DPAC) is hosting a show that has it all — comedy, heart, energy and pure entertainment. “School of Rock,” which is being performed today through Sunday at DPAC, manages to capture the youth of children and adults alike.
The story follows Dewey Finn (Rob Colletti), a wannabe rock star with a dream. All he wants to do is win the “Battle of the Bands.” But Dewey can’t even pay rent. This difficulty leads him to pose as a substitute teacher at an uppity prep school to earn some extra cash. While at the school, Dewey’s free spirit and childish zeal impacts all those around him including the teachers, the principal Rosalie (Lexie Dorsett Sharp) and especially the children he teaches, turning his classroom into a competition worthy rock band.
   ”School of Rock” was performed flawlessly. Colletti, as Dewey Finn, was exceptional with comedic timing, hilarious physicality and he produced a wide range of voices for Dewey’s roller coaster of emotions and situations. Colletti’s vocals pulled the character together into a lovable dreamer and hilarious character that one would want to be immediate friends with. Colletti was complemented by Sharp’s character of Principal Rosalie, whose strict personality was offset by her love of classic rock. Sharp balanced Rosalie’s many character traits with grace, rounding her out into a three-dimensional character.
The talent possessed by the child actors was utterly astonishing and well-worth the price of admittance. Each child exhibited a distinct personality, making each character a standout success. But it was much more than a talent for acting that stole the show. Whether by singing or playing the guitar, the child cast of “School of Rock” brought applause and shouts from the audience every time.
“School of Rock” has easily won the hearts of the Durham audience, and will continue to woo many others to the wonders and happiness of living life the way it was meant to be lived — with joy (and a little bit of rock ‘n’ roll).
Know before you go: The show contains some mild language. Strobe lights are used on occasion.
Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. today and Thursday; 8 p.m. Friday; 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday; and 1 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. Sunday at the Durham Performing Arts Center, 123 Vivian St., Durham. Tickets range in price from $35 to $134 and can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com or by calling 800-745-3000.

Rachel Teseneer is a sophomore at North Carolina State University and a Teens & 20s writer.

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