‘Kick off your Sunday shoes’: Footloose opens at the NorShor Theatre

[anvplayer video=”5118195″ station=”998130″]

Kick off your Sunday shoes, The 80’s are coming back to the NorShor Theatre stage!

The jukebox musical Footloose is now open in Duluth and is running up to July 17th. Tickets can be found on their website here.

The local production, put on by Duluth Playhouse, has been drawing attention from the theatre community outside of the Northland and even drew in their two leads for Footloose.

Both Jacob Higdon and Hope Nordquist, who play Ren McCormack and Ariel Moore, are now calling Duluth their home away from home. Jacob just finished up school in Michigan and Hope is from Minneapolis.

Jacob Higdon says he sent in his audition up after a uggestion from his girlfriend. "It was actually kind of crazy. I was just scrolling through Playbill one day, I was filming for something else, and then I saw the listing here”, says Jacob.

Hope Nordquist had a similar way of finding out about the production. After connecting through the Music Director and Choreographer after missing out on a separate production of Footloose. She says, “They were like, ‘Hey, why don’t you just submit for us and come up here for the summer?’"

The Duluth Playhouse, now being recognized by other creatives as a valuable place to spend their time doing their craft.

Jacob says, “[It’s] such a professional theatre and space for artistic exploration. And it’s been so fun to play and just kind of figure out what our Footloose is here."

Both Jacob, Hope and the entire cast of Footloose are ready to take on the challenges of a jukebox musical.

"The show is deceptively beastly”, says Hope Nordquist, “It’s hard, and you have to pace yourself, it’s a big sing!"

With songs like “Holding Out For A Hero”, “Let’s Hear It For The Boy”, and “Footloose” it’s important for them to keep the energy going high every weekend. Hope describes the show as deceptively beastly.

Jacob says, "You just got to trust those people on stage with you to send you that energy. So in a show like this you really got to be keyed in or people can miss out on the energy that they so desperately need.”

Hope takes on one of the show’s biggest feat by performing “Holding Out For A Hero” as Ariel. She says, “[It] is such a big sing. And I wanted to play Ariel since I was like a teenager, but I never knew I could actually sing it!”

She says she wants to do justice for the music everyone knows but also wants to be able to do it in her own way. Which Nordquist continues to do in her role, being that Hope is Asian American.

Hope says, "As an Asian American actor, I believe in representation and so that has been a very incredible journey for me as well. And it’s been really special to be able to play a character that I’ve really only seen played by white actors."

Through their process of the show, the team worked together to weave in the experience of an adoptee into Ariel’s story. Both of Hope’s parents in the show are white, so without changing the script they were able to bring elements of this experience to the stage.

Both of the actors say that they are enjoying their time in Duluth and would even come back to perform with Duluth Playhouse in the future.

Footloose runs from June 24 – July 17th, 2022. And you can find out more information about the show on their website.