The Riverbank High School Drama performed a compilation of William Shakespeare plays for audiences on March 31 and April 1. Both nights the Black Box Theater was packed and with each ticket guests were given a choice of two cupcakes that were themed to each of the following plays: Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Hamlet and a Midsummer Night’s Dream. The collaboration between the culinary class and the drama department was the perfect combination for a birthday themed production.
Over 35 students participated in the Shakespeare production with drama teacher Lezlie Acker directing them.
“They performed scenes and monologues from Shakespeare’s plays, as well as seven ten-minute comedic plays that took a modern twist on some of Shakespeare’s most notable works,” stated Acker. “One play, ‘Romeo, Juliet, and Julie,’ a modern comedy of errors where instead of one Juliet, there are two, who happen to be twins, was written by Drama Club student and junior Katie Larson.”
Senior students introduced each play throughout the performances where they delivered interesting facts and background information on Shakespeare. The audience was also involved in activities like “Who Said It, Shakespeare or Tupac,” a game of Shakespearean Madlibs and an activity that included insults given by audience members to an actor that was trying to steal the show.
“It was very much an ensemble show, where all actors worked together, playing multiple roles,” added Acker. “Each group of Drama 1, Drama 2 and Drama Club students chose the plays they wanted to perform and cast them themselves.
“The students had a great time rehearsing, making creative choices about which plays to produce, and writing their own brand of comedy to celebrate a classic theatrical hero.”
Samuel Garcia, Yvette Reyes, Jacob Raper, and Cobie Alanis hosted the production throughout the evening.
Proud of Larson’s play, Acker explained that it was well-written, and even funnier than many of the other short plays written by professional playwrights that students produced.
“I am currently searching for a ten-minute play competition that she can enter her play into because I think she shows a lot of talent and real promise as a playwright,” said Acker.
The culinary class led by Emily Cowdrey baked 450 cupcakes that were all themed for each play.
“It went great,” stated Cowdrey. “The one that was liked the most was the snicker doodle cupcake with a witch hat representing Macbeth.
“We had a black forest, red velvet, snicker doodle, and lemon-rosemary.”
Funds raised at this production will be split between the two departments for future projects and assignments.
“It was great to partner up with the drama department,” added Cowdrey. “I hope to partner with other departments in school to do more events like this.”
“I wanted it to feel like a party, and it really did; even down to the decorations and cupcakes,” expressed Acker. “I think the audience had almost as much fun as the students, and who knows, they might have even learned a thing or two about the Bard. It was all about having a great time, and with that in mind, I would say it was a huge success.”