Drama Production Sells Out

Sarada Symonds, Staff Writer

The fall production of John Cariani’s play Almost Maine opened to 3 sold out shows in the CPAC on November 29 through December 1. This also marks the first time the drama department and the video department have worked in tandem.

According to video production teacher Justin Seligman, Video 3 students filmed the performance of Almost Maine. “We were running 4 cameras, and we will be producing DVDs after break,” said Seligman. There are no plans to put the content online, but will be sold by the head of the drama department Jamie Donohoe.

The Drama department has been preparing for the play since September, when Donohoe held auditions. According to senior Kyle Merryman, a veteran of the drama department, they began with read-throughs and progressed to full scenes. In the 2 weeks before the play, the cast worked on sets and participated in “tech week,” where they worked on lighting.

Merryman describes the play as the story of many different couples living in Almost, Maine on the night of the Aurora Borealis. “It is basically about people trying to find a human connection. In this play, that mostly means love. Gaining it, losing it, and what hinders us from being able to find love, which is ultimately ourselves,” he said.

Conley-Lauvdal, who starred as Rhondasaid, “It was a really personal play with a wide cast of characters, so it really connected with the audience.” She prepared for her role by emotionally connecting with her character. “I was trying to understand the motivations of my character so I could really understand their actions,” she said.

Merryman is very excited about the play’s success. According to him, the cast this year was a lot more prepared for this play than productions they had previously done. Conley-Lauvdal agreed, “I thought everyone put a lot of hard work into it, so it’s great that it did so well.”

According to Donohoe the cast and crew worked hard this year to put together the play. “This cast was very dedicated and talented and welcomed me pushing them, which is how we achieved such a high level of performance,” he said.

Donohoe read the play this summer and “fell in love with it. According to Donohoe, “Each scene has at least one beautiful moment.” Senior Lily Quint said, “The play seemed a lot fresher because it was so different.”  Quint said, “It was really cool at the end when it started snowing and they looked at the Northern lights together. It felt really connected.”

Special effects, like the Northern lights and snow were only possible due to the crew. Senior Justin Archangel helped work on the lighting for the play, long with Campo alum Sam crosley and sophomore Kourosh Arasteh. “You really feel like a family working on the play, and just really connected. On tech, you’re really guiding the crew and giving them an environment,” said Archangel.

The drama department will begin working on another play this spring.