Roxbury Latin and Winsor students stage “Oliver!”

Over Friday and Saturday evenings, 4 & 5 May, the combined efforts of Roxbury Latin and Winsor students presented the musical “Oliver!” in RL’s Smith Theater. The musical is based upon the novel Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens in which Oliver, a nine-year-old orphan, escapes from the workhouse and makes his way to London, where the “Artful Dodger” hooks him for Fagin’s gang of pickpockets.


Directed by Marge Dunn, the cast of 15 characters included Jamie Drachman of Class VI as Oliver, Eli Bailit as The Artful Dodger, and senior Andrew White as Fagin. Fifteen RL boys and Winsor girls made up the ensemble, and eleven RL instrumentalists made up the orchestra under the direction of Rob Opdycke.


With music and lyrics by Lionel Bart, Oliver! premiered in the West End in 1960, earning Bart the Tony Award for Best Original Score in 1963. The show enjoyed long runs in London and on Broadway (after being brought to the US by producer David Merrick in 1963) along with tours and revivals. Little known fact: Davy Jones (later a founding member of the Monkees) played The Artful Dodger in the Broadway production.See photos of the production here.