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Love takes spotlight in LO fall play

Senior Zach Davis and junior Hannah Rains practice their vignette for Almost, Maine, at Lake Orion High School Nov. 17-19. Photo submitted (click for larger version)
November 09, 2011 - By Olivia Shumaker

Special Writer for The Review

A multifaceted picture of love will be painted at Lake Orion High School later this month.

The Thespian Troupe's fall production, Almost, Maine, features various vignettes that highlight different people in one small town in the middle of nowhere on a January night. Each meets with a love interest – some that they have lost, some that they never had and some that they are meeting for the first time.

The production is scheduled for Nov. 17-19, at 7:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door, $5 for students and senior citizens; $7 for adults, with general admission seating.

Teacher sponsor and director Leann Lowe said, given its theme, Almost, Maine is a very adult play, with adult themes. Lowe (almost jokingly) added she needed to put a PG-13 rating on the play because, "it's not the kind of thing middle school students are going to come to and go 'Wow, that was a great play!' but the adults are going to go, 'Wow, that was really amazing.'"

In one of the play's nine vignettes, the couple of interest is an older pair, whose children are grown up. They realize that, after spending so much effort on family instead of each other, thei relationship does not seem to exist anymore. On their anniversary, the wife says to her husband, "I don't think I love you anymore."

"As long as I've been associated with the drama program, we've never done a play that's so serious and adult in format," said Lowe.

Fall plays like Almost, Maine usually involve some aspect of theater that Lowe wants to teach students, unlike spring productions, which are typically musicals with lighter subject matter, such as last year's "Seussical." In addition, the fall production is usually shorter, with this year's play only about an hour long.

"You have to be emotionally involved in your part," said Kathryn Havrilla, a senior and Thespian officer. "You can't just go on and be like, 'Whatever.' You have to actually think about it."

The cast has been rehearsing since the second week of September. Lowe said the production includes 17 actors and about 40-45 students in some way are involved, including the off stage crew.

Students in separate vignettes practiced one day per week with the student directors and one day a week with Lowe, but did not get the chance to see each other's vignettes until October 31. Perhaps, in a way, that will add to the realism of the vignettes, Lowe thought.

"The whole show is about those awkward moments of love—when you realize you're in love or not in love," she explained.

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