Students act it up with senior one-acts

Lights! Camera! Action! Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, prepare yourselves for two nights of top-notch entertainment. Directed by seniors in Ames High drama, the senior one-act plays will proudly be performed in the high school auditorium on Thursday, April 11 and Friday, April 12. This is no ordinary show. Over the course of these two nights, several dramatic one-acts will be shown. Because these plays do not occur over several acts, each one will be fairly short to watch. “A one-act play is a play that is shorter than a full, multi-act production that usually has one break,” drama department head Steven Woolery said. “They are usually anywhere between 10 minutes to maybe 45 minutes.” Therefore, the senior directors will have to make the most of every moment for their one-act to carry a strong message. “In that time the plot, conflict, character, and resolution or point must be developed. A well written one-act play can be very challenging to perform as well as make a significant point in its plot. Good one-act plays accomplish much in a short space,” Woolery said. This year, senior one-act plays will be directed by Melissa Jones and Emily Linch, Tanner Wahlin, Gavin Sedies, and Emma Hoefer and Andrew Baldridge. “My one-act that I am directing with Emily Linch is ‘Trifles’ by Susan Glaspell. It’s about the aftermath of a murder. A man is found strangled to death in his bed next to his wife,” Melissa Jones said. “The one-act centers around the interaction of a group of men detectives and their wives while doing detective work. It’s per-femenist.” The one-act by Jones and Linch will star several other seniors, including Daniel Delay, Carrie Herrman, Jon Laczniak, Ian Warren, and Lacey Wyckoff. On the other hand, Tanner Wahlin will direct a one-act called ‘The Cop and the Anthem.’ “It’s about a park-bench bum in about 1910 New York City. Every winter he gets himself arrested and sent to prison so he can hang out inside where it’s warm and the food is free,” Wahlin said. “But it seems this year, nothing he tries is working, so he comes up with increasingly creative ways of getting arrested.” Wahlin’s cast includes junior Matthew Klocke as the lead, along with juniors Jamie Steyer, Jared Wolt, and Rachael Stammer, and senior Amos Hart. To see these students and others, consider attending the senior one-acts. According to Jones, students can “come to see some really original work directed and acted by fellow students just like you and me.” In accordance with Jones, Wahlin encourages students to come because “the one-acts are the most unique production done by the drama department each year. The seniors are free to choose their own shows (or write it themselves) and their casts. All the shows turn out to be extremely creative and just plain fun; with a short show, the directors and actors are able to make a very tight performance, simple and engaging, and the small casts allow for everyone to play off of each other as an ensemble.” The senior one-acts have been a long-time Ames High tradition, and this year, they are bound to deliver lots of laughs and possibly tears. “I cannot say for certain, but after asking some of the adults who work here who are former AHS students, I can say the one-acts have been around for at least over 40 years,” Woolery said. “A long time.” The seniors as well as the actors have been working hard to make the nights a success. Please consider attending to support the drama department. There is nothing quite like live entertainment, especially when it’s put on by the creative and talented minds of Ames High students. “This year we have four great shows put on by longtime Thespians who know what they’re doing, and our underclassmen casts have never been stronger,” Wahlin said. “Everyone should come see all the shows each year, obviously, but the one-acts are special.”