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Thespians perform The Matchmaker, await judges’ results

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Thespians perform The Matchmaker, await judges’ results

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Now that The Matchmaker has been performed, the anticipation about the results of adjudication to perform at Theatrefest is plaguing the Thespians. Theatre director and show technical director Teslen Sadowski will be called the day after Thanksgiving, hopefully with something else to be thankful for.
“I have to sit by my phone between the hours of one and five,” she said.
For director Clare McConville, who has already been through the adjudication process, The Matchmaker’s submission is something exciting.
“It’s such a great opportunity for both me and the students. We get feedback about tech and acting,” she said.
The show was performed Oct. 23-26. On Thursday, Oct. 23, opening night, the judges attended. The judges traveled from neighboring high schools, Round Lake and Lakes, and they went through specialized training prior to attend the performance. Judges watch the performance and take notes, and following the show, they interact with students in a “critical thinking” interview where they check students’ understanding of the show.
“While it was nerve-racking to have judges attend our show, we also learned a lot that can improve our theatre department,” said junior Katie Pellettiere, who plays a cook in the show.
For students, the process of adjudication had added pressure.
“Of course it was a little daunting to have our show judged,” said senior Raj Zaveri, who plays the main character Horace Vandergelder. “Really the focus was to get the show running as smooth as possible and getting everybody as comfortable as [they] could be. That was really all we could hope for when we stepped forth to be judged. We put on the best show we [could].”
To prepare for the show, students worked on line memorization, blocking and characterization.
“We began by setting the stage for the specific act that would be worked on, and then we would dive right in to the material scheduled for that day,” said assistant stage manager Lexie Gutierrez. “We would stop and go through the act when it was necessary to go over a line, blocking or any other issue facing the actor/actress.”
For this show, Sadowski and McConville decided early on to change the time era of the show from the 1800s to the 1930s.
“We decided on art deco because it’s shiny and poppy,” Sadowski said. “For the set, we used arches with accents and bright colors to reflect the style, and I think it can be connected to the comical farce aspects as well.”
The switch gave the company the freedom to create their set, but is also resulted in many challenges that the technicians and actors had to overcome.

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Thespians perform The Matchmaker, await judges’ results