Tonawanda News — “She’s probably the most fun character in the musical, because she gets to let loose and do whatever comes to her mind,” Arsenault said of Doralee. “She’s just over the top in the every positive way. She’s the nicest person, and the most honest also.”
While Doralee is fun to play, one part of the role was “terrifying,” she said; the country accent with which the character speaks. Arsenault said she tried to make it real without being too outlandish, ultimately patterning it after Parton’s real-life accent.
“You don’t want it to be too country,” she said. “Once I got it down, it was so much fun. Who else gets to say ‘Yee ha!’ as often as I do?”
Opposite this trio stands junior Joshuah Conlan, who plays the villain of the piece, Hart, the “sexist, egotistical, lying, hypocritical, bigot” boss.
It’s a challenge, Conlan said, because not only is it completely opposite his own character, but also utterly different from his role of Hero in last year’s “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum.”
“Throw all that innocence out the window ... and that’s what my character is this year,” Conlan said. “It’s been difficult at times to be able to channel him.
“But this is an excellent opportunity and I love it. It’s one of the most fun roles I’ve ever had.”
Aiding and abetting Hart is his assistant, Roz, played by Victoria Stauffiger.
“She is very much out of my comfort zone,” Stauffinger said of the role. “She wants to be in everybody’s business. She wants to know everything. She’s constantly two steps behind Franklin Hart.
“I tell everyone in the cast, if Roz Keith was a real person, I’d hate her,” she admitted. “But I like the character I play. I’m really enjoying it.”