GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

February 27, 2013

RHS 'Llamas' preview state drama

By Times Staff
Gloucester Daily Times

---- — Rockport High School Drama Llamas are back on center stage.

The school’s theater group has prepared Lisa Loomer’s work “Distracted” for this year’s Massachusetts Educational Theatre Guild Drama Festival, and the Llamas will present a preview performance for the public this Thursday, Feb. 28 at 7 p.m. in the John Lane Auditorium at the school at 24 Jerden’s Lane.

This seriocomedy — a play that blends comic and serious moments — follows a modern family faced with modern problems. Nine-year-old Jesse can’t seem to sit still or stay out of trouble. His teacher thinks it’s Attention Deficit Disorder. Dad thinks boys will be boys. But Mama is in need of answers.

The play not only discusses the topic of distractibility in our modern times, but forces the audience to experience it by breaking typical conventions of the stage. At times, the actors will drop character to talk directly to the audience, and shift from scene to scene at lightning speed. And the character of Jesse appears merely a shadow on stage as the play moves from comical to thought-provoking moments.

The 40 cast and crew members will present their work on March 2 at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School.

Rockport will be one of eight schools competing for advancement in the Hamilton-Wenham program, along with The Clark School, Hamilton-Wenham, Nazareth Academy, North Reading, North Shore Technical, Pope John XXIII and Wakefield High School.

Three schools will advance. To qualify for advancement, shows must be set up and struck down with five minutes and must be performed in 40 minutes or less. In total, 112 schools will perform at 14 festival sites throughout Massachusetts.

The RHS Drama Llamas will perform first, at Hamilton-Wenham Regional High School on March 2 at 9 a.m. at 775 Bay Road, South Hamilton. Tickets for the festival will be $10 at the door.

The cast includes: Rachel Sternlicht, Tyler Edmonds, Sam Cunningham, Aidan Wright, Jennie Yoors, Renee Waller, Jenny Sonia, Soni Razdan, Henry Meredith, Corey Silver and Sarah Visnick. The understudies are: Fiona Norning, Anders Larson, Nick Endicott, Katherine MacKinnon, Lydia Vincent, Danielle Pool, Emma Brousseau, Mary Colussi, Logan Trupiano, Jack Brisson and Alexandra Legendre.

The technical crew is comprised of: stage manager Josie Garfield; assistant stage manager Alex Demarjian; light design Jeff Cloak; light operation Jeff Cloak and Sayles Kasten; sound design Courtney Ashwell; properties design Tyler Hurst, Rowan Lampert and Freddy Widmer; costume design Jack Reilly, Andrea Waldron and Jessica Williams; set design Josie Garfield; construction & run crew are Nate Allen, Courtney Ashwell, Ben Cook, Alex Demarjian, Josie Garfield, Annabelle Harling, Sayles Kasten, Liam McCarthy, Sophie Palmer and Erik Radzinski; scenic artist Anna Rittenberg and Ryan Davis.

The artistic director is Denise Ferazzi. The directors are Whitney Swanberg and Brian Audano and technical director is Nancy Bogardus.

RHS Drama’s production of “Distracted” is made possible, in part, by a grant from the Rockport Cultural Council.

Rockport Drama Llamas What: "Distracted:" Public preview of the a play that will be Rockport High's entry in state drama festival. When: Thursday, 7 p.m. Where: John Lane Auditorium, Rockport High School