by Jazlynn Pastor
The aroma of dinner fills the house. Soon, the family gathers to the dining room to share a lovely meal. Stories are exchanged across the table, Father laughs about today’s news, and Mother says to “Eat the greens,” because it builds strong bodies. San Marino High School’s production, The Dining, shares the various memories created in the dining room – during or not during suppertime. There are endless moments of humor, seriousness, suspense, and sincerity. To fully understand the play, you should watch it for yourself. Come and see the wonderful creation stirred up by San Marino High School’s cast, crew, and director, Blake Williams.
Showings are Thursday, September 26, Friday, September 27 and Saturday, September 28 in San Marino High School’s Webb Theatre beginning at 7:00 p.m. Tickets are only $5.
San Marino’s Theatre Department is a force to be reckoned with. The cast and crew rehearse almost daily for 3 to 4 hours – not to mention that some students have other obligations to take care of Associated Student Body, cheer, dance, and of course, academics. Like any other hobby or activity, theater requires practice, hard work, and dedication. Actors and actresses must be willing to express themselves and take on a character.
The cast is not the only group of students that put on a good show; the crew is the “Man behind the curtain” (literally). The crew members help provide lighting, background music, and a set for the production. San Marino’s cast and crew are like Yin and Yang – they are two halves that create a whole. Without one, the show cannot go on.
San Marino’s Theater Department is a family. Each individual is unique and brings something new to each production. On stage, they come together and do what they do best – perform. They capture an audience and tell a story. If you are looking for wholesome entertainment, San Marino’s ‘The Dining’ is just the meal you need.
What does the experience mean to two of the school’s most experienced and talented individuals.
“Well, theater for me is really being able to tell a story that should get everyone in the audience into it,” said Gregory Netchaev, a senior at San Marino High School and president of Thespians. “It should get everyone in the audience to understand what you’re trying to say through theatre. I think theater is a really good messenger because when you have 200 people in the audience, you’re taking them on the journey that you want them to be on. And you’re telling them things and you’re teaching them. You’re telling them lessons and all of these things that they wouldn’t know if they went to a movie or something else – because those are more generic. I feel with theater, it’s more personal because it’s live. It’s a different connection.”
Blake Williams, Drama Director at San Marino High School, finds great value in the stage – on both sides of the curtain.
“I think every kid in high school should be taking theater because the drama program is to teach the kids how to like themselves for who they are, how to go out into the world and be active participants, and try to create change and make the world a better place,” Williams said. “The theater class gives students a place to be grounded, to express themselves. It challenges themselves and holds them accountable. This program – whether it’s beginning, intermediate, or advanced – is really meant to challenge the kids, not with homework, but with their brain. Are you an active human? Do you have empathy? Do you understand the world around you? And how are you going to be an adult and do it? And then we do some plays. It’s really more for me, my classes in theater, are about giving the kids a high school that is well-rounded.”
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