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'Time Flies' pulls audience into funny worlds

by: PHOTO BY ELLEN SPITALERI -  TV Man, Andrew Madsen, tries to pull Laura, Alyson Fazzolari, into his TV world, while TV Woman, Kelila Henkin looks on.Six plays, six sets and a whole lot of work by Karlyn Love’s advanced drama students will be in evidence on Feb. 28, when “Time Flies” debuts onstage at Oregon City High School.

The play is six short comedies, written by David Ives, and it will continue March 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 in the Black Box Theatre.

“David Ives’ specialty is comedy and satire; there is high and low comedy, witty stuff and physical comedy,” Love said.

The six plays are all student directed and feature actors only from the advanced drama class.

“Students had to find their own props, make their own costumes and do their own sound,” Love said, adding that the directors all collaborated with Mark Schwahn, theater production manager at OCHS, for set construction.

The advanced drama class presents the student-directed and produced plays every other year, Love said.

“This is an opportunity for students to experience leadership and see what really goes on in putting a play together. Everyone who directs has a newfound respect for directors, and it makes them better actors,” she added.

‘Captive Audience

One of the plays on the bill is “Captive Audience.” Set in 1963, it is a satirical re-imagining of the classic comedy “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” even to the point that two of the characters are named Rob and Laura, as in Rob Petrie, played by Van Dyke, and Laura Petrie, played by Mary Tyler Moore.

The set and the costumes are all in shades of gray, black and white, because the original TV show was in black and white, Love noted.

The plot of the show has a “Twilight Zone” twist, said director Megan Parrish, a senior.

The family is Rob and Laura, but there are two other characters, TV Man and TV Woman, who “are trying to take the family over. The TV starts to influence what they say,” Parrish said.

She added that the play was written in the 1980s, but is so relevant to today, because technology is taking over people’s lives.

This was her first directing experience, and she said she was able to have fun with her peers in a new way. She has also gained a new respect for directors.

“Actors only think about acting, not what it takes to get the play up and running. Directors have to know everything in the script,” she said.

As she watched the play come to life, she wanted to say to her actors, “Wow, thank you so much for collaborating with me.”

Parrish used her directing experience to fulfill her senior project, she added.

Staying ‘perky’

Andrew Madsen plays TV Man, and said his character’s job is “to influence Rob and get him sucked into the TV and not turn off the TV. I want to be a key aspect in his life.”

For TV Woman Kelila Henkin, “Captive Audience” is her senior project, and all the major benchmarks are present in being in a play, including communication, being part of a team and problem solving, she said.

Her character is “also trying to take over the family. We are locked into this TV and it is time to revolt and get out and experience life,” Henkin said.

Both Sam Babst, who plays Rob, and Alyson Fazzolari, who plays Laura, watched a lot of “The Dick Van Dyke Show,” to get a handle on their characters.

“Rob is mindless; he has pretty much been taken over by the TV,” Babst said, adding that he wanted Rob to stay “perky” like a character in a sit-com.

He brought his own positive attitude to Rob, he said, adding that he likes to make a joke out of everything.

Meanwhile, Laura is madly trying to get Rob’s attention, and not succeeding very well, said Fazzolari.

She not only watched the classic TV show, but she would pause it and repeat what Mary Tyler Moore said in the character of Laura.

“I really learned how to become someone that people really know. That was a lot to conquer, and I wanted to bring her out as best I could,” she added.

Fast Facts

The OCHS advanced drama class presents “Time Flies,” six short comedies by David Ives

Feb. 28 and March 1, 2, 7, 8 and 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Venue: Black Box Theatre at OCHS, 19761 S. Beavercreek Road, in Oregon City.

Tickets: $8, available at the box office only, during play times

The production is recommended for students 13 and older. For more information, visit ochs.orecity.us.k12.or.us/drama or call 503-785-8980.

The six plays are: “Time Flies,” “Arabian Nights,” “Dr. Fritz or the Forces of Light,” “Babels in Arms,” “Captive Audience” and “Sure Thing.”



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