November 20, 2013 - If you want to see a funny, but touching comedy about the daily lives of four mentally handicapped men living in a group home, while being taken care of by their social worker, then check out Oxford High School Theatre's rendition of "The Boys Next Door," showing Nov. 21, 22 and 23 at OHS Fine Arts Center.
"The Boys Next Door" features (from left): Andy Fedewa, Logan Mace, David Gillespie, Noah Crutchfield and Andy Fedewa. Photo by Trevor Keiser (click for larger version)
"It's just one of those very unique scripts that walks an interesting line between humor and poignancy. You cry, you laugh, it's one of those," said Director Krista Price. "I've directed this one a few times and it's just one of those scripts (that) I really believe in the message of it and in the past has very much affected audience members."
"It's great for follow-up conversations with your kids and family members," she continued. "It's a great show for everyone."
Andy Fedewa plays Jack Palmer, the social worker/caretaker of the residents at the apartment. While Palmer does his best and is a hard worker, Fedewa says he gets burned out by all the responsibilities placed on him.
"I like how real (Jack) is, laid back, but kind of a parental figure in the eyes of the residents at the apartment," Fedewa said. "I wish he was stronger and held on a little bit more because he kind of gives up at the end, so I wish he could have seen it through."
As for the play, he said "it opens a window to a world people don't usually get to see."
"You get to explore the minds of those we probably ignore and don't really pay attention to as much," Fedewa added.
Noah Crutchfield plays Barry Klemper, who he described as "the most normal out of the group."
"He thinks he is a pro golfer and has a lot of dad issues. I am kind of the saddest character I would say because of some of the parts it gets really dark," Crutchfield said. "I think it's fun to be a pro golfer the whole time and how silly it is because Barry really thinks he is and gives out lessons."
"This is my first year of being in theater, he added. "This whole new experience is fun for me and I love the whole play."
Logan Mace plays the "very uptight, anxious and little bit nerdy" Arnold Wiggins.
"I like that he has a plan and he knows what he is going to do. His plan is to move to Russia, but that may take a turn throughout the show," Mace said. "His character is also annoying because he says the same lines over and over again, but it's a very good show and has lots of meaning to it."
Price said the cast has been "a fun group of guys to work with."
"There have been a lot of challenges with this particular show, but they are doing a great job of bringing these characters to life."
Tickets are $5 (student), $8 (adult) and $10 VIP (center section). For show times and tickets, call the box office at 248-969-5321.
Trevor graduated with degrees in English and communications from Rochester College. He wrote for his college and LA View newspapers before joining The Clarkston News in May 2007.