Actors step back into 1920s with new play Tuesday, March 2

Peeking+through+the+hole+of+the+%27Wall%2C%27+sophomore+actress+Madeleine+Wentz%2C+sophomore+actress+Lauren+Grammer+and+sophomore+actor+Austin+Rose+look+for+each+other.+The+show+will+start+at+6%3A30+p.m.+in+the+auditorium.+The+cost+is+%245+payable+in+cash+or+check+at+the+entrance+and+face+masks+are+required.+%E2%80%9CAvery+and+I+have+been+working+really+hard+on+our+parts+together%2C%E2%80%9D+sophomore+actor+Tate+Lauby+said.+%E2%80%9CWe+are+super+excited+for+people+to+see+the+show+on+Tuesday.+When+you+see+the+show+I+think+you+will+be+able+to+see+everyone%E2%80%99s+dedication+and+effort.+For+instance+Avery+and+I+learned+how+to+do+the+Charleston+dance+for+the+special+part+of+the+show.%E2%80%9D%0A

Cate Emma Warren

Peeking through the hole of the ‘Wall,’ sophomore actress Madeleine Wentz, sophomore actress Lauren Grammer and sophomore actor Austin Rose look for each other. The show will start at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium. The cost is $5 payable in cash or check at the entrance and face masks are required. “Avery and I have been working really hard on our parts together,” sophomore actor Tate Lauby said. “We are super excited for people to see the show on Tuesday. When you see the show I think you will be able to see everyone’s dedication and effort. For instance Avery and I learned how to do the Charleston dance for the special part of the show.”

Reading Time: 5 minutes

William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” will open for in-person viewing Tuesday, March 2. The show starts at 6:30 p.m. in the auditorium, with tickets costing $5 per person at the entrance. Performed with a 1920s Louisiana twist, the school’s theatre department production now awaits its first public performance of the year. The production, which also serves as the University Interscholastic League One Act Play for the group, lasts no longer than 40 minutes, which is the contest’s time limit. Other regulations include seven-minute intervals for setting up and striking the set. 

The department has worked on the play since late October, and the Tuesday performance will be the only showing open to the public. Currently, competition performances will be closed and for judges only due to COVID-19 regulations that are now a part of the rulebook. Face masks are also a part of the new regulations. 

Moving about mid-scene, junior Ailee McFarland, freshman Titus Boyd, sophomore Austin Rose, sophomore Cooper Smith, sophomore Tate Lauby, and senior Avery Schopp act out one of the opening scenes in the play. “It has been fun,” sophomore actor Cooper Smith said. “It has been hard. It has been difficult. It has been a journey. This play is a lot different than last year, I think it will be just as good or even better than the last one was supposed to be. Through all of this I have learned to be patient with everything.”

 “(Due to wearing face masks) we really have to work on announcing how our actions are interpreted, and making our emotions clear,” sophomore actress Lauren Grammer said. “The show has been going really well considering all of the obstacles we faced.”

Receiving her part for the play within the production, junior Marlee Parrish listens intently to sophomore Tate Lauby. There are two ensembles in the show, a group of fairies and a group of mechanicals. “It has been awesome getting to work on the show,” sophomore alternate actor Stone Porter said. “I get to give people critiques and compliments on their work while always being an important role in the show.”

The set of the show includes UIL-required grey matter, added LED lights, greenery attached to everything, and trees. Some music included in the play was designed especially for the show by a composer. The company of the play has blended the show with movies like Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog” in mind.

“It has been a great experience,” sophomore lighting technician Gabe Torres said. “It is a lot of rush and adrenaline especially throughout the clinic. I am happy to get to work with everyone and connect with the people in the booth.”

 

Holding ‘Hermia’ or junior actress Ailee McFarland from a fight, sophomore actor Cooper Smith has his arm on her head. McFarland has been a part of the department for 2 years. “It has been really fun working on this production,” McFarland said. “We have had the expected ups and downs with COVID, but it has been nice to be able to adjust use it to help us get better at our work.”

Senior costume designer Phoenix Gothard has been working on the costumes for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” since November. This is the second year she is the lead designer of the UIL OAP. This year she got to work with the 1920s twist on the show in many different ways. 

“I am really, really excited (for people to see the show),” Gothard said. “Some of the costumes have been very hard to work on, especially Emily’s dress with all the leaves and greenery. I am really excited to see how it all looks on stage. I absolutely love the fairies. Their corsets are so much fun and the way the tulle moves. I also really like the 1920s. I love all the fringe, the way the dresses shift with movement, I love the hats and hairstyles. I am so excited to work on the hair and makeup for all of it.” 

The show’s public viewing on Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. in the Prosper High School Auditorium will require face masks upon entrance.

 

Frozen between monologues, junior Chandler Webb, sophomore Madeleine Wentz, sophomore Lauren Grammer, junior Marlee Parrish, and sophomore Austin Rose stand still as junior Karolina Rubio performs behind them. Senior actress Charlize Fedele plays to attend Marymount Manhattan College in the fall after four years in the Prosper Theatre department. “Through the department I have learned hard work,” Fedele said. “I have also learned the importance of showing kindness to underclassmen. It has been a very humbling experience to be able to teach younger actors and help them with their future in the department.”

“I am currently playing Helena in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Janet in ‘The Drowsy Chaperone,'” senior actress Charlize Fedele said. “It has overall been an amazing opportunity. I have been working towards this since my freshman year. It is challenging playing two leads at the same time, but at the end of the day it is really rewarding. I know my castmates always have my back. I think this has prepared and challenged me to become the best actress I can be.”

The show is going really well. I am really excited to perform. Everyone has been putting in a lot of effort into the show and I can’t wait for people to finally get to see it.””

— senior actress Avery Schopp

This show is the first OAP production the students have performed since 2019. Last year, the students were one week away from their first competition when the pandemic caused all upcoming competitions to be canceled. For senior actress Emily Mongaras, this will be her final production with the department, and she said working on the show is “terrifying, amazing and wonderful all at the same time.” 

“Honestly, it has been an adventure,” Mongaras said. “I sort of got my character down right away because I was so excited about this role. I have actually been struggling a lot more, because of that, and this being my last UIL production. This is my favorite performance by far, and I love this show with my whole heart.”