Once Upon a Mattress was a Blast


Emma Ratkovic and Kate Beal

The 2021 fall musical Once Upon a Mattress was an absolute blast. I was shocked to see just how talented the students at Park City High School (PCHS) were. 


The play was a retelling of a classic fairytale: The Princess and the Pea. It was the story of Winnifred, a swamp princess, and other members of the courts trying to ensure her marriage to the prince. 


Winnifred’s character, played by senior Brigitte Davis, added an element of humor into the classic story. She was not like the other princesses portrayed in traditional stories; she was so eager she even swam the moat!  The play found chances to show her physical and mental strength. I liked how the production chose to reject the perfect and frilly princess stereotype and portray a more realistic and fun version. 


The royal family consisted of the domineering queen, the mute but expressive king, and the naive prince.  All of them were played wonderfully, giving a wide range of responses to the outgoing Winnifred.


There was also a plentiful array of other side characters.  The musical took its time to investigate their stories, showing us more than just Winnifred’s perspective.  Chief among their secondary plots was the story of Lady Larken and Knight Harry, who were struggling to resolve their personal issues.


I also loved the nightingale who was played by Kenny Butz. Butz had me laughing out loud with his ridiculous but hilarious role. His obnoxious kazoo playing was supposed to make the princess fall asleep, however, it only resulted in a sleepless night. 


The production of the musical helped lend a cohesive quality to it.  Whether it was the castle set or the towering pile of mattresses, there was always something interesting to look at.


I really loved this musical and hope that I am able to see PCHS students’ talent portrayed on stage once again in the near future!