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Greenfield - Whitnall High School is bringing the 1970s back to life in their fall musical, "8 Track: The Sounds of the 70s," with performances running the first two weekends of November.

"It's a collaboration of a bunch of 70s songs, and we share the story of different experiences in the time, with like the Vietnam War and different stuff going on in the period," described Mary Jensik, a sophomore in show's dance ensemble.

The 90-minute show is one continuous string of songs, featuring familiar hits of the decade such as "I Will Survive," "YMCA," "Everything is Beautiful" and "I Am Woman."

"For people who lived through the 70s, there's a huge nostalgia factor, because they grew up with the songs, knew the meanings behind them, the artists, so it'll be a real treat for them," said Grant Singer, a senior vocalist.

Though the songs may be familiar to those who experienced them first-hand, many students entered into the show without much prior exposure to the full set list.

So, in preparation for the show, director Tom Weissgerber had the students explore the time period in order to get a better grasp of the themes they are signing about.

"We weren't born to experience the 70s, so we had to do a lot of research to look at how the time period was, and the different songs and what they mean," said Abby Callahan, a junior vocalist in the show.

Weissgerber also had his cast listen to the original versions of the songs, so they could understand the "emotional connections" in them.

The end result is not only a show with plenty of singing and dancing, but a cast of students who, having learned the history of the era, strive to bring the history to life.

"We try to express the feelings of what the songs are trying to portray with our voices and dancing, whatever else we're trying to do," said sophomore chorus member Sara Peplinski.

The songs, and the history behind them, are the real draw of the musical, according to Weissgerber, who invites everyone to see the show and "Take a musical journey back to the sounds of the 70s."

Performances of "8 Track" will be held at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 3, 4, 5, 11, and noon and 2 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 6 and 13. Tickets are $12 for adults and $8 for students and seniors.

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