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Shakespeare performed as fall play


By Deborah Gardener

William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is a play often performed by different schools throughout the country, but this year, it will be performed with a new twist. Director Daryl Phillips is directing Romeo and Juliet using a technique called steam-punk .

The play will be Dec. 1st, 2nd, and 3rd from 6:30 PM. untill 10:00 PM. Tickets purchased by students and parents for the play will be sold for $3 when they are bought at earlier dates and $5 for adults and $3 for children at the door.

Seniors Mara Barrett and Matt Branthoover, sophomore Sarah Fitch, and juniors Cody Hanshew and Samantha Jennings are performing in the play. This is not the first play performed this year and many of the students performing in this play have performed in previous plays. Barrett had a connection to the play immediately.

“I’ve always loved Shakespeare and I love the story and I love to act,” said Barrett. “I wanted to play Juliet and I wanted to play Lady Capulet because she goes through every emotion without having to go through long speeches.”

Starring opposite of Barrett, Branthoover has his reasons for wanting to be in the play also.

“I’ve never done Shakespeare before and I thought it would be a fun experience and my girlfriend was also trying out for the play so I thought it would be a great bonding experience.” Branthoover said.

The theme “steampunk” is a sub genre of science fiction and is inspired by the industrial revolution. The clothing, technology, and jewelry is very specific and based off the Victorian time period.

“The jewelry consists of gears used as details which is a more fun and stylistic look,” Philips said.

Philips has performed in Romeo and Juliet twice , once being at the New York Theatre. He has also attended festivals honoring Shakespeare in Alabama and Richmond.

Philips is very excited about the play as are the students knowing there will be dancing and new combat techniques involved.

“My favorite part of the play that I’m not in is Act 3 Scene 1 when Mercutio and Tybalt die because its an interesting and intense scene and there’s a lot of combat.” Barrett said.

“My favorite part of the show would have to be between the fighting scenes, “It would have to be a tie between the fighting scenes, when I’m overly depressed, and when Juliet and I make out for absolutely no reason,” Branthoover said.

With the play performance less than a month away, deadlines become very important. “ I really want their (actors) lines to memorized so that they could focus on adding more humanity,” said Philips. “The students have to be off book by Nov. 14th. That doesn’t mean they cant ask for lines. Learning the lines ties them to the emotional journey of the character in the story. That always helps with memorization.”

“I still have an act to memorize but i just take it scene by scene and it takes a lot of studying and going over,” Branthoover said.

“Shakespeare can be really difficult to memorize but the muscle memory can help to make iteasier to learn it more fluently,” Barrett said.

“Repetition and constant repeating in your head. And you pretty much have to learn people’s lines of the people ahead of you.” Both Jennings and Hanshew said.

Nervousness, stressfulness, and excitement are all emotions of the cast of Romeo and Juliet.

“I think it will turn out well and it’s a little stressful because of canceled practices and I think everybody has come a long way. It’ll be great when it’s finished,” Branthoover said.

“I’m excited for it and proud of the hard work because the standards for the play are high because of the play being Shakespeare,” Hanshew said.

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