North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

AHS Drama presents 'Moon Over Buffalo'

 

Christopher Andersson

Arlington High School student Hannah Jensen, center, shouts with excitement while students Morgan Bryson, left, and Curtis Welch watch during a rehearsal of Arlington High School Drama's fall production "Moon Over Buffalo" on Oct. 27.

Mistaken identities, broken engagements and more are part of Arlington High School Drama's fall production, the farcical "Moon Over Buffalo."

"Moon Over Buffalo is a classic farce. It has a rather improbable story line, terribly flawed characters and non-stop fun," said director Scott Moberly.

The play is about a theater troupe that is "starting to go downhill. They're sort of rusty and an old acting family, television's getting popular, they're not getting as many jobs," said senior Isaiah Mitzelfeldt, who is playing the part of George Hay.

The troop can catch their big break when famous director Frank Capra comes to scout out actors for a movie though, but they'll have to get through their matinee performance.

"These characters provide a much-needed relief from the stress of another messy, contentious election season and provides a pure, unapologetic escape for the audience," said Moberly.

They also provide an opportunity for students to try a comedic farce, which the seniors haven't had the opportunity to try, he said.

It's a change of pace from last year's more serious pieces.

"It's a nice break from the shows we have been doing. Like last year we did 'The Crucible' and that was really heavy," said senior Hannah Jensen, who plays Charlotte Hay.

"After this show we're happy and stuff, but after 'The Crucible' you sort of get in a mindset that's intense," said Mitzelfeldt.

Comedy is frequently more difficult than straight drama as well, said Moberly, especially with the "split-second timing" required, but it gives students a good opportunity to grow, he said.

"When you're doing a comedy and farce, these plays get really complicated," said Mitzelfeldt.

"Timing is huge in this show, with so many doors and entrances and exits it's a huge part," said Jensen.

The play includes a lot of situational comedy and some slapstick.

"Some of the situations on stage can be really awkward, but that's the point," said Mitzelfeldt.

Mitzelfeldt said one of the trickiest parts for him has been the second half of the play where his character is drunk.

"Intoxication is not an easy thing to pick up," he joked.

Jensen said she has enjoyed stepping into new territory with her character.

"I've always struggled trying to get out of my comfort zone and do big things, but Charlotte is out there and super dramatic so that's what I've had to get around," she said.

Because of the small cast for the show, the play has been double cast. Students said it was useful to be able to have another performance to directly compare to.

"It's been really nice to be able to learn from our counterpart and just grow that way," said Jensen.

"They're doing it in a different way and you can pull stuff to add to your show, because each cast brings so many different things to a show," said Mitzelfeldt.

Jensen said she has enjoyed working with so many other people in this play.

"I really love the cast and the people in the cast. They're so much fun," she said.

"I love my students. I cannot stress enough that their hard work inspires and pushes me to give my best every day," said Moberly.

Showings begin Nov. 3 to 5 and continue Nov. 11 to 12. All showings begin at 7 p.m. at the Byrnes Performing Arts Center at Arlington High School. A matinee showing will also be held at 2 p.m. on Nov. 12.

The show is rated PG-13 and some of the subject matter is not intended for younger audiences.

Purchase tickets at byrnesperformingarts.org.

 

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