by Nick Molnar, 2013 (posted 12/06/11)
One Acts is essentially "battle of the plays" that is held annually at Cheshire High School. Each grade level puts on an approximate half-hour play in an attempt to impress the judges and make their friends and family laugh. This year's One Acts, held on December 2nd, can only be described in one word: awesome! This year, every act was individually fun and unique, panning out for an incredibly enjoyable and unforgettable night.
We were introduced to One Acts 2011 by the four Emcees, Josh Skydel, Alex Mongillo, Mike Parisi, and Andrew Brown. Let me say, it was a pleasure to have these guys on stage. They were all very funny and presented their own individual personalities in a way that was completely believable, never getting boring or tiring. They even had their own little sub-plot involving a certain hurtful Facebook status.
Following the Emcees was the first Act of the night, True Love's Kiss performed by the class of 2015, written by Emily Huminski and Samantha Price. Their play was about Prince Charming (Keyes Dorsey), being the main contestant on a dating show, his suitors consisting of Ariel (Rachel Bogan), Cinderella (Molly Silverman), Sleeping Beauty (Jen Brown), and Belle (Meaghan Carroll). Each of the contestants had their own unique personalities that made them all memorable and fun to watch. Because it was a TV show, the worried Host (Connor Baker) would cut to a commercial break, during which time we were shown parody advertisements starring various Disney stars we all recognize. Directed by Jill Durso, Samantha Price, and Stephanie Turcotte.
After the freshman was the class of 2014, performing This Title is Blocked by Websense, written by Benji Saccoccio, Rohan Roy, Kashif Ahmed, and Bradley D-Amato. The production was innovative, imaginative, hilarious, and just plain fun to watch. It was about Wilson (Rohan Roy), a teenage boy with demanding parents (Kelsey Uguccioni and Colin Palma) that never let him use the internet. One day while at the library, he rebels and gets sucked into the internet where he meets the master of the universe, Tom Hanks (Benji Saccoccio). Wilson battles Google (Meaghan Kirby), Facebook (Stephanie Zucker), YouTube (Patrick Linder), MySpace (Bridget Claflin), Twitter (Theresa Cashore), and even the deadly and powerful Websense (Phoebe Carmichael). There was never a dull moment in the sophomores’ act. Directed by Rachel Galuska, Zoe Sheehan, and Julie Gagliardi.
Then it was time for the Junior Act, Just Another 80’s Movie, written by Alex Richardson and Alicia Torello. The play was a parody of such staple 80’s flicks as Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, Sixteen Candles, and Say Anything. It followed Harris Mueller (Selmon Rafey), the coolest kid in school who's decided to skip school with his best friend, Cameron (Nick Haberli) and one of his many girlfriends, Samantha (Alex Richardson), while being chased down by Principal Bryan (Ryan Hannon). They really nailed the costuming in accordance with the average 1980's teen comedy. I also really enjoyed the scene where a cliched 80’s montage took place, depicting Harris and his friends on their day off. Overall, Just Another '80s Movie was fun and enjoyable. Directed by, well, everyone.
Following the Junior Act was the Senior class of 2011's Cats: The Musical, written by Davana Bolton. To briefly sum up their performance: it… was… amazing. Honestly, talk about going out with a bang. The show was about four casting directors (Steven Merola, Jennifer Lonergan, David Dickinson, and Abi Whelan) and their stage manager(Andrew Brown) attempting to cast the musical, Cats. Ultimately, everyone who auditions is so ridiculously quirky that they refuse to use most of them. Such crazies included a Chetto gangster (Emily Bradley), two textbook teenage girls (Lindsey Canas and Davana Bolton), a pirate (Josh Skydel), an elderly cat enthusiast (Megan Stewart), an egotistical sports star (Amin Taheri), a musical fanatic catgirl (Lisa Fischer), a flamboyant thespian (Alex Mongillo), and a master of disguise (Mike Parisi).
After the seniors won, Bolton stated, "There are no stars in our One Acts." All performers were equally important and were all especially memorable and unique. It looks like each of these parts was written specifically for the people that played them, and it all fits together perfectly. Bottom line, these kids love each other, and nothing shows it more than their performance in One Acts 2011. They have this stereotypical sitcom bond with each other that more than brought out the best in all of them. Directed by Davana Bolton, Alex Mongillo, and David Dickinson.
In-between each Act, there was an extra musical performance. Erica Cha performed an unbelievable acoustic version of "Living on a Prayer" by Bon-Jovi. The next short performance was an acapella group called "Yours Truly," who performed a mash-up of Michael Jackson/Jackson Five songs, proving to be a great tribute overall.
Next, The Cautions, consisting of Josh Skydel, Eric Price, and Jon Kirby played an acoustic version of "Carol of the Bells", which was also very cool and enjoyable. To close the show, Matt Feinberg, Benji Saccaccio, and Kashif Ahmed sang "We are the World,"which eventually inspired the entire cast of One Acts to join in!
One Acts 2011 was spectacular. Everyone involved took the entire concept of just having fun and rolled with it. Everyone did their best, and it feels good to know that I go to school every day with so many hard-working kids that I am once again, proud to call my classmates. I'm totally psyched for One Acts 2012!