Matilda, played by Celeste Toschinetz, sings during a dress rehearsal of “Matilda” Tuesday at Midland Community Theatre in Midland. (Michael Bauer|Odessa American)

MIDLAND It was a musical that was originally supposed to grace the stage at Midland Community Theatre two years ago. However, a disruption in the form of a pandemic had other plans and the musical was shelved for a couple of years. Now, “Matilda: The Musical” will finally take place at Midland Community Theatre, beginning with this today’s show.

The show is scheduled to run at 7:30 p.m. on July 8 and 9, 2:30 p.m. on July 10, 7:30 p.m. July 15 and 16 and again at 2:30 p.m. July 17 at Midland Community Theatre.

Director Bill Williams is excited to finally see the show come to light after the delay.

“It was always a show that we wanted to do so I’m glad that we finally have the opportunity to do it,” Williams said. “It’s just interesting because when you pick a show, you have certain kids that are in the group during that time so the group has completely changed since we were originally going to do the show. It’s given us more opportunities for our younger members of the group and also people who haven’t been in a lot of shows that have an opportunity to do this musical. It’s all worked out in a positive way.”

The musical is based on the famous children’s novel of the same name by Roald Dahl. The story centers on Matilda, a precocious 5-year-old girl with the gift of telekinesis who loves reading and overcomes obstacles caused by her family and school. The daughter of abusive parents, Matilda finds refuge in library books which she reads quickly and in creating her own stories.

Things are no better at school where she also must face a tyrannical and cruel headmistress Miss Trunchbull who believes in Crunchem Hall’s motto: “Bambinatum est Magitum,” or “Children are Maggots.”

Matilda, played by Celeste Troschinetz, performs during a dress rehearsal Tuesday at Midland Community Theatre in Midland. (Michael Bauer|Odessa American)

Playing the lead role of Matilda is Celeste Troschinetz.

“I’ve really enjoyed how brave and out there she is,” Troschinetz said of her character. “She really sticks up for herself and others which I’ve really liked. She’s very extroverted as well. I’m kind of the opposite. I’m very shy and very nervous. But she’s been fun to play. I think it’s helping me get out of my shell as myself as a person and in my acting as well.”

Troschinetz said this will be her sixth show.

“It’s really fun,” Troschinetz said. “I really like doing this. I really enjoy it. I’ve been doing this since I was young so watching myself and other people around me and being in shows with them and watching them grow has been really cool.”

Troschinetz also talked about this being her first time playing the lead role in any show.

“I think I’ve handled it well,” Troschinetz said. “It’s really fun. This is my first time having a role this big. It’s really exciting. The lines being going really well especially since I was really sick for a couple of rehearsals so not having as much rehearsal time can make it challenging but it’s been a good challenge.”

In the musical, Matilda finds companionship in her teacher, Miss Honey. Though well-intentioned, Miss Honey is shy and fragile. She is taught to stand up against the adults in her world and in doing so, discovers her own remarkable powers.

Miss Honey, left, played by Danna Ferrer de Lamadrid, and ensemble cast member Seed John, right, perform during a dress rehearsal of “Matilda” Tuesday at Midland Community Theatre in Midland. (Michael Bauer|Odessa American)

The role of Miss Honey for this production will be double-cast with Danna Ferrer De Lamadrid and Jenna Perea both playing the part.

“She’s the very timid and shy person,” Lamadrid said. “It’s kind of the opposite of me but also kind of similar to me. I do believe that Matilda influences her to grow as a person. It’s really fun to play that and grow with her. She has a lot of emotions that I find relatable. She’s very realistic to what the musical is. It’s the very cartoony musical but I feel like she’s one of the realistic characters that people can relate to.”

Perea says it’s been interesting with her and Lamadrid both playing the role of Miss Honey. The way it works is that they take turns playing the role of Miss Honey each show.

“It’s been interesting taking turns doing scenes,” Perea said. “Everyone has to do them twice so that we can both have practices. (Lamadrid) has been fun to work with. I wouldn’t want anyone else to share the role with.”

This is the Lamadrid’s third production at Midland Community Theatre and she’s enjoyed doing all of the shows.

“They’ve been fun,” Lamadrid said. “I’ve got to meet a lot of good people who I’m glad I’ve gotten to meet. It’s been a challenging show so it’s been hard at times. But it’s really fun and it’s a great learning experience.”

This is also Perea’s third show.

“I really enjoy getting to be involved with it and getting to meet new people,” Perea said. “I’ve enjoyed getting to know my character. For a while, I didn’t know if I liked her. I thought she wasn’t brave enough. I thought she was too much of a coward but I realized that she actually does have a lot of character development. I think she’s the most developed character of the show. At the beginning, she’s this mousy, timid person that never stands up but at the end, she stands up for everyone. It’s wonderful.”

Mr. Wormwood (played by Ryan Smith) scolds Matilda (played by Celeste Troschinetz) for reading during a dress rehearsal of “Matilda” Tuesday at Midland Community Theatre in Midland. (Michael Bauer|Odessa American)

Playing the role of Matilda’s father (Mr. Wormwood) is Ryan Smith. Mr. Wormwood can be described as a shady car salesman.

“That’s what he does for a living,” Smith said. “He’s a little crooked. You can definitely see that in his family life. He’s trying to sell off these cars and get as much money as he can with the least amount of effort. He’s trying to get rich quick. There’s an interesting dynamic between him and Matilda because he’s trying to make his family rich and do whatever he wants and Matilda is telling him to not care about money and to enjoy books. There’s kind of a big conflict between the two. I think Mr. Wormwood softens up to what she’s trying to tell him.”

Playing the role of Mr. Wormwood has been enjoyable for Smith, saying he gets to have some funny lines in the show.

“There are a lot of good one-liners in there. Those really challenged me because there’s a lot of audience interaction in there and it’s challenged my ability to make people laugh. Hopefully, I’ve gotten better at that. I think that’s been a big upside to this show.”

Smith, who recently graduated from Legacy High School, has done between 10-15 shows at Midland Community Theatre.

“Rehearsals have been pretty good,” Smith said. “I’ve been involved with a lot of shows. I’ve been here for seven years. Most of our leads are barely freshmen in high school and there are a lot of people that are incredibly young but really talented. It’s been an amazing show.”

Members of the chorus sing during a dress rehearsal of Matilda Tuesday at the Midland Community Theatre in Midland. (Michael Bauer|Odessa American)

The show has 22 cast members. Rehearsals began in June.

“Practices have been pretty good,” Williams said. “It’s been a little bit hectic because we’re doing our theatre school camp at the same time. Then we come and do rehearsals so I’ve been pulling 12-hour days in June. It’s been tiring but also rewarding. There’s so much talent that it does liven things up in the afternoon when you may be wearing down a little bit. You’ll see this bit of acting that makes your eyes widen and say ‘that’s marvelous.’ It’s an exciting process.”

He’s enjoyed seeing everyone come together and put on a good show during practices.

“I think it’s great to see all these great talented actors come together and work,” Williams said. “I think when you’re working with teens, you just try to keep a positive attitude, regardless of whatever obstacles are in the way. In a way, that’s the story of Matilda. All this stuff happens to her but she perseveres and she’s really gutsy. It doesn’t matter what’s coming her way. She makes it out to the best that it can be.”

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If you go

  • What: Matilda: The Musical.
  • When: 7:30 p.m. July 8, 7:30 p.m. July 9, 2:30 p.m. July 10, 7:30 p.m. July 15, 7:30 p.m. July 16, 2:30 p.m. July 17.
  • Where: Midland Community Theatre.
  • Where to purchase tickets: