Play Shares Joys Of Being 13

Jessica Goolsby
Wednesday - March 17, 2010
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Aaron Michael Garrido of Kapolei (second from left) deals with moving to a new state, a new school and making new friends - all while turning 13 - in the Hawaii premiere of the Broadway musical ‘13.’ Photo by Aaron Rideout.

Ah, puberty - at about age 13 years, your voice changes, your body morphs, you feel as awkward as ever. Thankfully, there are 29 notso-awkward teens from 10 different Oahu schools working together on stage for the Hawaii premiere of 13, a new musical by Jason Robert Brown, set to run March 26-April 3 at Ron Bright Theatre in Kaneohe (45-386 Kaneohe Bay Drive).

Kapolei High School’s Aaron Michael Garrido stars as Evan Goldman, a youngster on the brink of turning 13 whose life has just been turned upside down by a move to a new state and a new school. Evan meets next door neighbor Patrice (Moanalua’s Talena Kelln) along with fellow middle-schoolers Kendra, Lucy,Brett and Archie and two dozen other teen actors from Mililani to Waialua who round out this young, fun, energetic production directed by Karen Meyer and choreographed by Natalie Holly Uehara. Musical director Daren Kimura will conduct the live, professional rock band on stage for all performances.


“A couple years ago we had nine schools represented, but this is like a new record,“joked Meyer, a former Kapolei Middle School teacher who now heads Castle Performing Arts Center at Castle High School.“We’ve got kids ranging in age from 12 to 17 from Kapolei High, Mililani High, Waialua High, Kailua High, Mililani Middle, Castle High, Moanalua High, Hawaii Tech Academy, Kalaheo High and Kahaluu Elementary - and the dedication they all have is outstanding. This is about the most enthusiastic I’ve ever seen a cast!

“It’s only been shown on Broadway for a limited run of 18 months, and it hasn’t ever been shown in Hawaii, so we’re excited to bring something new to the stage. It’s just going to be a great rock ‘n’roll musical production that is a must-see for all.”

Tickets are on sale now for $15 and $10. For show times and to purchase online with no fees charged, visit or call Meyer at 233-5626. Daytime shows also are available for school groups.

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