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Sandy High drama opens comedy Passengers


Play challenges students with a large cast and short timeline

Sandy High Drama’s “Passengers” will open at 7:30 p.m. Friday, March 7, and cast and crew are hard at work rehearsing to bring it all together.

On Monday, March 3, director and drama teacher Chris Harris reported they still had a little bit of painting to do to finish the set, but the process was coming along.

“Passengers,” a comedy by Sam Bobrick, was Harris’ choice because of the short rehearsal schedule the drama students were forced into for this play.

Between hosting a competition at the school and the several days SHS closed down because of inclement weather this season, Harris had to make a quick decision.

Harris said he chose “Passengers” because it is broken into several small scenes, which allowed him to work in depth with the two to three actors in one scene, while other cast members could work on their scenes on their own.

Because of this arrangement, parts of the show are even a mystery to cast members. “I couldn’t tell you how the rest of the show is,” said senior Sam Helzer, who plays the part of Walter. “But I know my scene is going well.”

Helzer said the layout of the show allows for a much bigger cast. Instead of having five or six actors playing multiple characters, Harris decided to have a different actor play each part.

“We’re getting the chance to train a lot more people who wouldn’t have originally gotten into the show,” Helzer said.

Roughly 20 students are working on “Passengers.”

For sophomore Dillon Erwin, this is the first play he’s been cast in. His character, Frank, is a nervous sort of fellow whose wife is pushing him into robbing a bus. Erwin said that so far he has enjoyed the experience and is making connections with other students who share his passion.by: POST PHOTO: KYLIE WRAY - Sophomore Dillon Erwin as Frank.

“My favorite part has been gaining experience and furthering myself as an actor,” Erwin said. “I hope to eventually play a lead part in a show as a senior.”

Although the show is set in a modern time period, making it easier for students to relate to, it is not devoid of challenges.

Junior Karlie Kitchens plays Marsha, a 50-year-old mom. “It’s kind of challenging because you can’t sound young,” she said.

Alongside Kitchens’ character, challenging parts include crooks, a homeless woman and a runaway bride.

Despite the challenges the cast has faced with this show, there is no doubt they will be ready for their debut Friday. Junior Noah Poulin, who plays the part of Bobby, said he’s not worried. “It seems like all the scenes are coming together really well,” he said.

*Tickets can be reserved by calling Sandy High School at 503-668-8011 ext. 7313.