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Tartuffe-ified

Beth Hernandez, Writer

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The first week of school, the actors started working on the play Tartuffe to create another world for audiences to step into in October. Tartuffe is our main stage play for the fall with Mr. Scheuer as our director and it is a french comedy written by Moliere.

 

What is this play even about? Well, there is a man named Tartuffe and he is a poor fellow that tries to come off as a holy religious man. He happens to fool the head of a rich family into believing his little act, however, Orgon’s family can see right through him. While Tartuffe is living in Orgon’s house, he tries to steal away his wife and riches. Things head south before they’re turned for the better.

 

“At first, I had no idea what was going on and I was really insecure about acting in the show. I started to fall in love with Tartuffe once everything came together and it made sense to me. Overall, I had a great experience and it was a great start to my high school career,” Freshmen Rebecca Longtin said.

Rehearsals started the first week of school this year and practiced from 4-7 for the most part every night. The cast list was assembled in May before we left for summer. Students memorized all their lines before coming back to school, so they had as much time to enrich their scenes as possible. Things stayed simple until the month of October, that’s when practice could go till almost 9 o’clock at night. Not everything is perfect, changes are involved to clean up work and make it better.

 

“It actually went surprisingly well. I practiced a scene a week and practiced a monologue every night before I went to bed, so I would engrave it in my head,” Junior Bri Bussiere said.

 

The play’s performances went from the 25th through 29th of October and dress rehearsal is key to having a great show. This is where all people involved have to show up and help. Costume crew, makeup crew, and tech all need to be there to prepare for the show. Without tech they wouldn’t have a show and without the actors we wouldn’t have a performance. They go hand in hand and every job is important. One practice they were delayed ten minutes from going home because light cues were missed while running through the entire play. The errors that were made tied into the finished product. Running into the set is a thing that actually happens. Tuesday night, Graham Sloter was entering into the scene when he bumped into one of the tall columns. As it was falling he caught it, set it back in place, and then continued with the scene as if nothing happened. It’s better to goof at a run through than opening night right?

 

“Ya know when I went out on stage with my handsome, devilishly good looks, I didn’t expect a pillar to crumble. It did though and I caught it. It was amazing. I looked like an amazing man, holding the heavy pillar. I saved the show,” Senior Graham Sloter said.

 

A cool thing that contributes to the play is Fowler allows students to design the set. Josh Harpell, who is also Orgon in the play, pitched his design and has now come to life. Another student designer will be Kait Hartman for Peter and the Starcatcher(the upcoming spring play). His inspiration came from a chessboard. The main platform is a rake with the design of a chessboard. A dining table on the stage right and a lounge area on stage left compliments it. With two large columns and windows in the background. The rack and columns took a lot of work and time to complete. Both tech classes worked everyday on them since early September and still had some work to do before opening night.

 

“I didn’t even plan to design the set but they needed someone, so I came up with the whole design the night before the meeting. I thought of a chessboard because Tartuffe strategized a plan to fool Orgon like a chess game. The process was stressful because if there was any mistakes it freaked me out. The set was my baby and I think I accomplished what I wanted to do,” Senior Josh Harpell said.

 

Opening night was full of laughter and smiles, but it wouldn’t be complete without some unexpected twists. For starters, blood was shed. Actual blood. Josh Harpell was in the middle on a scene when he was drinking from a wine glass and while he was setting it down, it shattered. It happened to cut his finger and this was towards the end of the play, so Harpell didn’t leave the stage till the end of the show. Backstage was freaking out trying to get a band aid to him, but failed. He was a good actor and didn’t break character. Also, Graham Sloter scuffed his knee during a scene while he was getting stage slapped. Overall, the show went great! The audience ate it up so the cast and crew should be proud of what they created.

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