Cast of “Oklahoma!” learning more than lines and choreography

students practicing for the play on stage
Noah Martinez and Layla Agamy rehearse “People Will Say We’re in Love” as Curly and Laurey in “Oklahoma!”

More than 80 years after the original production of “Oklahoma!” captivated audiences on Broadway, students taking part in the Niskayuna High School Music Department’s production are learning more far than lines and choreography.

“I’ve never felt more part of something at Niskayuna High School than this musical,” said Layla Agamy, who portrays Laurey Williams.

This is Agamy’s second year participating in the musical. She said after watching her friends ‘have a blast’ performing in prior productions, she decided to get involved.

Though the experience has been a joyful one, Agamy said it hasn’t been without its challenges. Having never taken voice lessons, she felt some stress after being cast in a lead role this year.

“It was a lot of pressure to take on, especially when there are so many good people around you and you don’t want to let people down,” Agamy said. “But, I feel like we’ve all kind of grown together and the support in the room when you walk in, it’s more than evident.”

students practicing for the play on stage
Raj rehearses as Ali Akeem along with cast mates

That’s a sentiment shared among the rest of the cast.

“Everyone is just great to work with,” said Raghav Raj cast as Joe. “It’s a great environment and it makes me want to do better every time I come in.”

“I feel like each year I’ve learned more because Mr. [Eric] Hughes and Mrs. [Christina] Pizzino-Catalano are so great at what they do,” said Madhav Raj, who plays Ali Akeem. “Each year I keep learning something new, and I can’t wait to continue doing theater in the future.”

“Oklahoma!” performances begin February 29.