By Elizabeth Madden
Volume 69, Issue I
It is safe to say that almost everyone knows the tragic love story of Romeo and Juliet. From reading the Shakespeare play freshman year to watching movies and remakes of the drama, it is a story we all know well. Naturally, the freshmen English teachers and everyone who participates in the school play were very excited to hear that Romeo and Juliet was going to be featured as the fall drama this year but with a twist. This antique story from the Renaissance era set in Verona is jumping forward to a summer in a suburban-like town in the twenty-first century. This unexpected modernization allows relevant aspects from our own lives to be incorporated into the play, making it more relatable to the audience. According to Juliet Friedman, who coincidentally is playing the lead role of Juliet in the play, Mr. Driver plans to bring attention to the widespread public shootings through the conflicts that occur among the characters. “There is the use of firearms in the play,” Juliet explained, “we want to bring attention to gun violence and make a statement that this can happen anywhere.”
Juliet also mentioned how exciting it is for all of the cast members to be a part of such a familiar, famous play that is now set in a modern time period. “Everyone has this creative license to do what he or she wants with the characters and personalize the characters. I think everyone is really excited to dive into character and provide a backstory.”
This performance will not only be a great chance for the actors and actresses to have a better connection with their characters, but it provides the current freshman class a theatrical performance of a play they are currently studying. Ms. Fernandez, a ninth grade English teacher, explained how they are making changes to their reading schedule so it coincides with the production of the play. “We shifted the curriculum, so we’re going to teach it earlier in the year, so all the kids will be prepared to watch the show and have a foundation.” This reorganization will hopefully make new high schoolers more inclined to come and support school plays, especially because they are currently reading the play it is based on. Best of luck to all of the cast members!