Severna Park, MD – 28 OCT – Severn School
By Severn Current Student Solana Page
Severn School Puts on The Tempest as the Fall Play
The Severn School Fall play of The Tempest ran from October 18th through the 20th. The opening show was meant to be on the 17th, but with high winds that night, the play got moved to its rain date: 10/20. This play took place in the outdoor amphitheater where the cast repeatedly practiced. The cast ranged from freshman to seniors and for Emma Miller, this was her last show at Severn.
On Stage Cast:
Emma Miller ’20
Matthew Beagan ’20
Jake Leroux ’20
Michal Hesford ’21
Julia Youseff ’21
Zarah Meek ’21
Grace Derdarian ’21
Gabriella Novella ’22
Ava Winsom ’22
Maddie Clark ’22
Madie Wright ’23
Margaret Cravens ’23
Jeffery Huang ’23
Stage Manager: Robin Howie ‘20
Makeup and Hair Designer: Emma Lavis ’21
Stage Floor Design: Yeala Grimes ’21
Sound Technician: Brooke Griffin ‘22
Lighting Technician: Robin Howie ’20
Being that the play was held in the amphitheater, almost every single practice was held outside. These practices were very cold, and with some of the cast members having to be wet in the first scene, some got sick. Emma Miller got a lung infection after repeatedly being dunked into the water and sitting in the cold for the next three hours of play practice. Either way, the play was a success.
When my friends and I arrived the night of the play, we were greeted by Mr. Giddings where we were quickly checked in. A lit pathway led us to the amphitheater; a railing had been built so that the audience had some support while coming down the stairs. Unfortunately, one of my friends missed a step and did indeed fall. Aside from that, there were no other mishaps and everyone came dressed for the occasion. My friends and I layered up and intended to be warm for the play. Personally, I did not get cold once, granted that I was under a blanket with several layers of clothing on; I can only imagine how cold the cast members were.
The play began and there was beautiful lighting which seems difficult to manage outside, speakers were set up to give a surround-sound feeling, and mics were propped up at the front of the stage. When I went on the 18th, and the cast did an amazing job where the weeks of hard work was shown. I was impressed by Michael’s (and many others’) memorization of long passages without any flaws. The cast did a beautiful job and had a successful night.
On the 20th, the rain date, the weather did not permit and the play had to be moved inside. This was the cast’s first time ever being inside and they executed the play wonderfully. The show must go on!
I spoke with Grace Derdarian to ask her about her experience with the play. To begin, I asked her how often the play practices were outside and what was done to accommodate for the cold weather. She said, “Every single rehearsal was held outside so that we could figure out blocking and staging for each scene. There were only a few rehearsals if any, that was moved inside due to weather, which is ironic because two of our performances were thrown off by an actual tempest. The cold wasn’t too unbearable, except for a few nights, but we all worked around it! I felt so badly for those in the shipwreck in the first scene, who had to get completely drenched, but fortunately, they were able to change afterward. We had a lot of blankets and hot hands backstage.” Lastly, I asked Grace which night was most successful and how moving the play inside went, “I would have to say either the second or third night was our biggest success. Everyone really rose to the occasion when we had to perform inside on Sunday, which was a big surprise to everyone! Every night was so much fun, though, and I’m so lucky that I was able to collaborate and bond with such a talented, lovely cast. Every single one of them blew me away every time they stepped out on stage.”
Once again, Mr. Giddings put on a successful play and with the help of cast and crew members, all of the nights went smoothly from the audience’s point of view.