WDC’s one-act performance of ‘The Chair Play’ advances to Sections, Jan. 31
Congratulations to Wadena-Deer Creek High School’s one-act play for earning a first-place finish at Subsections on Saturday, Jan. 24 at Wadena Memorial Auditorium. WDC advances to Sections on Saturday, Jan. 31 at Hawley High School.
“They did a beautiful job. They were spot on!” said an excited and proud Jay Patterson, WDC's one-act director, adding. “What was really special was all eight of the main characters were starred. They received stars because they were so animated, so energizing.”
Those eight WDC students receiving a star of excellence for their performances included: Isaac Berger, Taylor Dirks, Hope Dumpprope, Alyssa Gilster, Samantha Kirkland, Hope Norenberg, Michael Small and David Wegscheid.
WDC’s one-act cast received a “meld of three,” meaning all three judges gave WDC a first-place score. One of the three judges also gave the one-act cast a list of areas they can improve on during rehearsals.
“We will be working on those weaknesses this week,” said Patterson. “It’s still a work in progress.”
Patterson said he is “extremely proud” of his student cast for mastering this one-act play, that he seriously considered dropping earlier in the season. “This play was really out of my comfort zone. Then, over time, the kids started to grab a hold of it, grow with it, mature with it,” he said.
While Patterson, a WDC Junior High English teacher, writes the majority of WDC’s one-act plays, this year’s “The Chair Play,” was written by Alan Haehnel, a Vermont English and drama teacher.
Patterson said “The Chair Play” was written to be a comedic play. With permission from the playwright, Patterson cut scenes 16 and 17 and wrote a new, surprise ending.
“One-act plays have got to have surprises. They cannot be predictable. They should also make you chuckle, they should even make you cry,” said Patterson, who has been directing one-act plays at WDC for more than 30 years.
Patterson describes WDC’s version of “The Chair Play” as one that explores the principles of economics in a fast-paced format, along with one constant stage prop -- a chair.
“The entire play is a metaphor. It’s incredibly poignant,” said Patterson.
Patterson invites the community, staff and students to another public performance of "The Chair Play" on Thursday, Jan. 29 at 7:30 p.m. in the Wadena Memorial Auditorium. Free admission.
The entire cast and crew include: The Principals: Samantha Kirkland, David Wegscheid, Michael Small, Alyssa Gilster, Isaac Berger, Hope Norenberg, Hope Dumpprope and Taylor Dirks. The Core: Grace Mertens, Michael Schmidt, Araya Magnuson, Esther Berger, Devyn Norenberg, Anissa Mench, Beth Schmitz, Mitchel Haman and Liz Peterson. Technical crew: Derek Plautz, Logan Taggart and Jasmyn Wood.
At Saturday’s Subsections, Eagle Valley High School took second place for "Beauty & the Beast" and also advances to Sections on Jan. 31.