Wilsonville High School Theatre’s first show of the year will be the American classic, Our Town, a play that explores the lives of a group of townsfolk from Grover’s Corners, a small, fictional town in New Hampshire at the turn of the century. Playwright Thorton Wilder intended the play to be a meditation on how we, as humans, get caught up in the minutiae of our everyday lives and often miss the beauty of the people and the world around us.
“The play is about telling the truth,” says director John Fitzgerald, “to accentuate this, Mr. Wilder intended it to be staged in as simple manner as possible, with a minimal amount of props and scenery.”
One of the more unique characteristics of the play is that there is a character called “The Stage Manager,” who “breaks the fourth wall” and speaks directly with the audience throughout, helping to remind them about what is important: family, connection, and relationships.
The main story of the play concerns two families who live next door to one another: The Webbs and the Gibbs. It follows their everyday trials and tribulations, and primarily focuses on the relationship of Emily Webb and George Gibbs, the teenage children of the two families who, over the course of time, fall in love with each other.
The cast includes junior Justine Cohen as The Stage Manager, junior Delane Cunningham as Emily Webb and sophomores Ellie Lauthner and Jason Black, as Mrs. and Mr. Webb, respectively. It also includes Paxton Crystal as George Gibbs, and juniors Paige Peterson and Levi Rule, as Mrs. and Mr. Gibbs, respectively. Also included are junior Kierra Rowan as George’s little sister Rebecca Gibbs, freshman Brock Taylor as Emily’s younger brother Wally Webb, junior Jake Young as local curmudgeon Simon Stimson, senior Laura Payne as gossipy widow Mrs. Soames, senior Dru Burton as Constable Warren, junior Ian Graham as Howie Newsome, freshman Kyle McArthur as undertaker Joe Stoddard, junior Jason Kummerman as Professor Willard, freshman Mikhaila Bishop as Woman in the Balcony, and WHS teacher Jason Katz as distant cousin, Sam Craig.
“The hope of the play,” says Fitzgerald, “is that it reminds us of the significance and importance of the people that we spend our time with, and that time is fleeting. We don’t get a chance to go back and do things over.”
This warm American classic is appropriate for all ages. Performances take place on November 1-3, and 8-10 at 7pm in the Wilsonville High School Auditorium. There will also be a 2pm matinee on Saturday, November 10th. Tickets are $7 for Adults and $5 for Students and Senior Citizens. Tickets are available at the door the night of the performance or online.