Presented by Theatre Aspen’s Winter Teen Conservatory

Shrek The Musical premiered last night at the Wheeler Opera House in Aspen, CO. This production was put on by the Theatre Aspen School and was directed by Graham Northrup and Choreographed and Stage Managed by Alie Walsh, with Jonathan Gorst as Music Director.


The show is terrific. The production, the acting, the singing, and the dancing were all top notch. We are used to seeing great theatre in Aspen, especially in the summer when Theatre Aspen brings Broadway to the mountains, but what was so exciting about this performance was that, not only are all the performers local, but they are all under the age of 17. Their performances went well beyond their years and experience.


Beth Fawley as Fiona had a natural sense of comedy that blended well with her strong singing voice and stage persona. Shrek was played by Aspen High School senior TJ Kaiser. He took the loveable ogre to a new level with his great accent and strong character development. It is impossible not to love Lyon Hamill as Donkey. He brought his own flair to a character that we all know so well and have seen famous actors play. Other stand outs were Luke Ryan as Farquaad, Talitha Jones as Gingy, and Luis Martinez as Pinocchio, but really every person on the stage made an impact with their performance.


Also impressive was the young company. The job of putting on a high level show while also giving great learning opportunities to younger aspiring actors not an easy one and this show does a fabulous job of putting it all together and making every actor’s participation fun and meaningful.


Just as music students come from around the world to study at the Aspen Music School, it looks like Theatre Aspen’s School is doing just the same for students wanting to study the craft of acting. The school leadership of Graham Northrup and Alie Walsh is nothing short of stellar, they make a difference every rehearsal for each of these kids.


Congratulations to all. Tickets at and at the Wheeler Opera House. Show is Friday December 12, and there is a matinee and evening performance on December 13th.