Mt. Pleasant Area High School prepares to stage 'Charley's Aunt'
By Kelly Vernon
Published: Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
Mt. Pleasant Area Junior-Senior High School students on Saturday will present “Charley's Aunt,” a 19th-century, three-act comedy by Brandon Thomas.
A cast of 10 students will perform the longest-running, classic farce in history, said Rich Bair, who is co-directing the production with Barb Rolla.
“Charley's Aunt” was first produced at the Royalty Theatre in London on Oct. 21, 1892, according to samuelfrench.com.
It premiered in New York City at the Standard Theatre on Oct. 2, 1894, according to the site.
It broke all historic records for plays of any kind, with an original London run of 1,466 performances.
The production was chosen, according to Bair, for its comedic nature that is suitable for all ages.
“Charley's Aunt” focuses on late 19th-century etiquette and proper behavior for ladies and gentlemen.
Two college students, portrayed by students Bruno Anys and Joshua Kinneer, devise a plan to meet their girlfriends with the aid of a chaperone.
However, the chaperone is not the person they intend.
Kinneer and Anna Shawley have both been in previous productions at the school, but this is their first time in lead roles.
Ryley Anderson will portray character Lord Fancourt Babberley.
He said it is the first time he has been part of a play that has given the actors more freedom to portray the characters through their own interpretations.
The most challenging issue for him has been adjusting to playing a woman, he added.
“It's been a totally different experience from any other character,” Anderson said. “I think that the comedy with the man in a dress might have some hooking power that will bring in the audience and keep them entertained through all three acts.”
Anderson said he feels that introducing a comedy such as “Charley's Aunt” will open the school and community to a more diverse selection of plays in the future. Bruno Anys will portray character Jack Chesney.
Anys said the role doesn't differentiate that much from the character of George Bailey, who he portrayed in the school's staging of “It's a Wonderful Life,” because he has to get into “an old-fashioned state of mind.”
However, those two characters differ widely in personality, he said.
“The best part of this performance, by far, is the slapstick comedy throughout this piece,” Anys said.
Bair said, “timing and delivery is everything in a comedy of this type and the students are putting their efforts into delivering for the audience.”
Both the actors and stage crew are pitching in as a team to keep things moving, Bair said.
Stage crew members, also under the direction of Bair, created swings for the set. It will be the first time swings have been used in a production at the school.
Bair said Rolla is “an inspiration for the students,” both as a great directing team member and a character actress.
“Charley's Aunt” will be performed at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday at the high school auditorium.
The price of admission is $5 for adults and $3 for students.
Kelly Vernon is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-547-5722 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Mt. Pleasant Area students to stage ‘Little Shop of Horrors’
- Mt. Pleasant Area Junior/Senior High School prepares for ‘Little Shop of Horrors’