By: Jessica Lemond, Junior
After the recent play, Random Acts of Comedy, I met with four of the student cast members. They were just as comical in real life as they were onstage, constantly bantering with each other. The extroverted seniors Maddie Elliott, Andrew McComas, Nick Duley, and Jacob Becker provided a glimpse into their performance.
First, the play was made up of three short, diverse comedy skits: “Complaint Department,” “How To Succeed In High School Without Really Trying,” and “Grim Fairy Tales.” Laura Legant, the director, hand picked the skits. “She tried to pick shows that were super funny and different, but that still complimented each other,” said McComas, who has participated in the school’s theater program for most of his high school career.
Unlike full feature plays and musicals, the skits were a new concept for the theatre department. “It was so much fun to put on because it was such a loose setting,” Elliott said, “They were totally different from each other in format and in the type of comedy, but all three were quality comedy—we cracked up the first time we read the scripts.”
Elliott has participated in the school’s theater program since she was a freshman. Given her experience, she was excited to have a little fun with Random Acts of Comedy. Her co-star agreed. “It was much more relaxed than last year’s play that was all in Shakespearian,” Becker added, grimacing at the memory of forgotten lines and bad imitations of Shakespearian English. “I don’t like to think about that play,” he added.
Junior Jenna Royle enjoyed the performance. “It was so funny, and it just made me want to pay attention,” she said. “It was honestly phenomenal and everyone seemed to be having a great time onstage. There was so much room for improv, and the actors jumped at every opportunity to incorporate their personality in to it.”
The actors were free to interpret their parts in any way they pleased, opening up opportunities for improvising. Becker, who was determined to make the most of his small part in “Grim Fairy Tales” as The Dirt Merchant who is a dog-like character, took it to the next level. “I found these sixties hippy glasses on the last day. They were groovy, dude!” Becker said animatedly, “So, I just ran out onstage for my part wearing these ridiculous sunglasses.”
“We all had crazy costumes,” Elliott added, “especially for the last skit where we dressed up as spoofs of fairy tale characters. I was the witch from Hansel and Gretel, and I had this long red cape and this crazy dress.”
The actors had a blast putting on the play, but Duley, being a first-time theater participant, was enlightened. Duley said, “I am disappointed I didn’t start theater sooner. It was so much fun to do, and it opened an entire world of creative arts to me. It was one of the best decisions I’ve made in my high school career.”
Duley spoke confidently and compassionately about his experience, while simultaneously twirling in perfect circles up and down the hallway. “I love my tennis shoes,” he explained, “and it turns out, I also love to sing and dance. I found that out this year.”
He can be found participating in multiple extra curricular activities and now adds performing arts to his list. Duley runs track and cross-country, performs in Main Street Choir, and contributes to Common Ground and DECA.
McComas and the others were really happy Duley chose to start theater. “He does everything, and we’re so happy he tried us out, too,” McComas said. “It just proves that anyone can do theater and be good at it,” said Elliott.
“I think this production was one of my favorites,” Elliott said. “I was super excited when I read the script. I think it was a really innovative idea. Comedy appeals to a lot of people.”
“I hope the school does more plays like this,” said Royle. “It was so much more fun to watch than a lot of the past plays.”