Westwood Horizon

Seniors Shine with Directorial Debut

The+cast+and+crew+of+%2713+Ways+To+Screw+Up+Your+College+Interview%27+gather+for+a+group+photo.+
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Seniors Shine with Directorial Debut

The cast and crew of '13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview' gather for a group photo.

The cast and crew of '13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview' gather for a group photo.

Photo Courtesy of Ms. Lydia Coats

The cast and crew of '13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview' gather for a group photo.

Photo Courtesy of Ms. Lydia Coats

Photo Courtesy of Ms. Lydia Coats

The cast and crew of '13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview' gather for a group photo.

By Rustin Mehrabani-Farsi, Extras Editor

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Given the opportunity to put on a performance of their very own, theater students Trevor Wyatt ‘19 and Simon Thomas ‘19 directed their fellow students in a play called 13 Ways To Screw Up Your College Interview, on Dec. 13-15. The play was a comedy and follows two college interviewers trying to fill up enrollment for their school, but all the students they interview are a bit strange.

“I thought it was fun, and it was a play that was very androgynous character-wise, so it didn’t matter the gender of the character, it just mattered who could play the role the best,” Wyatt said. “I thought it was a good first experience for freshmen and sophomore actors.”

Each of the 15 characters in the performance all required their own unique style of acting. Some were more over the top, like the more physical character of Melvin, played by Logan Hanson ‘22, who dances and belly-drums around the stage for over a minute, or the loud-mouthed, obnoxious brat Kimberly, portrayed by Anabelle Hicks ‘20. At the same time, the play featured characters on the opposite end of the spectrum, such as a more serious, threatening, two-faced applicant named Ben, acted out by Katherine Giles ‘22, and the interviewers’ more realistic reactions to all these people, played by Magda Riha ‘22 and Colin Partridge ‘22.

“Finding more realistic types of acting is hard,” Riha said. “But with an interview, all you get to do is be really creeped out and weirded out, which is fun because people think it’s hilarious. I’ve done the play 13 Ways to Screw Up Your College Interview, because we did it in eighth grade and I played Interviewer One, so I came back and did it again, and now I played Interviewer Two, which is cool because now I can say I’ve been in every scene in the play.”

Working with their tech people, Wyatt and Thomas had to figure out lighting, stage directions, props, and sound. They also had to be able to communicate with their actors, and maintain a balance between what the directors wanted the characters to be and allowing the actors to find the best way they could portray their character.

“It has been both stressful and amazing,” Wyatt said. “In doing these final runs before we opened, I’ve brought out a lot of new fun things for these characters that weren’t originally in rehearsal, and it made us all realize that we’re doing something for a reason.”

In the end, the directors, tech, and actors were able to produce a laugh out loud comedic show that delighted audiences. While new friends were made along the way, the performance also provided an opportunity for the older students to connect with the younger members of theater they usually wouldn’t see. They were able to share their knowledge with the future of their department, ensuring it would be in the best of hands when they’re gone.

“It’s an enjoyable experience, but so much more,” Liesel McMahan ‘21 said. “You make bonds with people you might have otherwise never made bonds with, but it’s also a learning experience. You learn techniques that you can use to improve your own skills. It’s just really amazing and special.”

About the Writer
Rustin Mehrabani-Farsi, Extras Editor

This is my first year as extras editor, and I'm really excited to see what I can bring to the table this...

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