Monday, May 20, 2024

Are you ready, kids? 'SpongeBob Musical' opens tonight

| February 23, 2024 1:00 AM

A young local burger flipper will star as a famous cartoon burger flipper when "The SpongeBob Musical" washes ashore to the Kroc Center stage this weekend.

As director of CYT North Idaho's production of "The SpongeBob Musical," Paisley Siemens has made the creative choice of casting a female, Juliet Hunt, to play SpongeBob SquarePants, a bubbly and positive sea sponge who loves his job making burgers. Like SpongeBob, Hunt loves her job working at the iconic Roger's Ice Cream and Burgers on Sherman Avenue in Coeur d'Alene. She also keeps busy as a junior in high school and served as Miss Coeur d'Alene's Teen 2023.

Siemens said hunt has a magnetic energy as a person and performer.

"I was really drawn to her for this role," Siemens said in a news release. "Getting to know her, she's just as uplifting and hardworking as our favorite sea sponge."

She said she had no idea Hunt and SpongeBob shared an occupation at the time of casting.

"It's so fun to see a young person have such joy in their work, just like SpongeBob does," Siemens said.

Nicole Randolph, owner of Roger's Ice Cream and Burgers, said Hunt is an amazing addition to the Roger's team.

"She has a positive and bubbly attitude just like the character she is portraying," Randolph said in the news release. "We believe so strongly in her that she has already been promoted to a team leader. We can't wait to see her in this CYT production."

CYT North Idaho Executive Artistic Director Jenny Keough said it has been a joy to see Hunt take on the SpongeBob role.

"'SpongeBob the Musical' is such a fun show that's all about friendship and overcoming obstacles," Keough said. "Juliet embodies the spirit of that beautifully. I can't wait to see her along with all the other kids shine on the stage in this production."

Hunt said she is incredibly grateful she will debut in her first big role as SpongeBob.

"I've loved getting to embody this fun character in a show with a really positive message," she said. "Our director, Paisley, has made this one of the best theater experiences I've had. Roger's has been an incredible support with my managers and coworkers cheering me on."

"The SpongeBob Musical" opens at 7 tonight at the Midge and Pepper Smock Family Theatre at the Kroc Center with shows Saturday and Sunday and March 2 and 3.

Admission is $18 for a standard ticket, $16 for kids 12 and younger, $15 per person for groups of 10 or more, $16 for seniors 65 and older and $20 at the door.