Curtains up on One Acts

Every year, the school offers theatre students the opportunity to direct their own productions of one act plays in the semi-annual one act festival. This year’s three entries were a wide array of theatre pieces, ranging from Shakespeare, to comedy, to a murder-thriller.

Mr. Keith Cassidy is the school’s theatre teacher. “We’ve done the one acts at least once if not twice a year every year I’ve been teaching,” he said. “The student-directed one acts have always been a part [of the theatre department].”

Junior Caleb Dunham was the director the comedy The Not So Silent Treatment, a play he has performed in the past but has never directed. His play is about parents who overreact to finding out their kids had been drinking.

One thing that was challenging for Dunham as the director was the blocking. “I had to come up with blocking for more people,” he said, commenting on the six person cast he had to arrange. “But I could do whatever I wanted with the show. I felt I had a lot more freedom.”

Senior Apara Manuja’s production was Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, only with a twist. “The play was gender swapped,” senior Mira Soni, who played Petruchia in the performance, said. This production of the classic Shakespeare comedy was also set on a college campus. Soni says that there is a difference between being in a show directed by an adult versus by a student. “Student directed shows are a little less structured,” she said.

Mr. Cassidy was excited to see students taking charge and directing their own productions. “[The one acts] are where you can take everything you’ve learned in [theatre] class and really put it to use in directing your own show,” he said. “You have great ownership of it.”