The Grant Union Drama Club kept their audience chuckling with a double feature April 10 on stage at the school in John Day.

Grant Union English teacher Angela Smith and Spanish teacher Kathy Sherwood directed the plays, which included a total of 25 actors.

“Middle School Dating Game” by Jennifer McVetty was presented by students in grades 6-8 with “contestants” hamming it up on stage, and high school students performed a satirical piece “The Complete Tale of the American Civil War (Abridged)” by Eddie McPherson.

Smith said this was a first play for many of the middle school actors, and they worked hard to develop the characters they portrayed.

“It’s wonderful to watch the students grow and develop in drama,” she said. “The confidence they gain from participation in drama will help them in many aspects of their lives.”

Ms. South was played by Erika Dickens. Mr. North (Sierra Cates), Plantation Owner (Ellie Justice), Abe Lincoln (Will Carpenter) and others took the stage as army leaders, soldiers, factory workers, reporters and more.

Carpenter also voiced the part of Yoda, adding another layer of humor.

A pause amidst the lighthearted and abbreviated retelling was a memorial of the many lives lost in war.

Sherwood said several actors took on new roles at the last minute, due to “unforeseen circumstances” and performed with great skill.

“They worked so hard, and we are very proud,” she said.

The play was their final performance of the school year. The club also presented Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night” in January.

Smith said the high school actors are looking forward to their annual trip to Ashland, April 25-27, to attend three plays.

The group will see Shakespeare’s “As You Like It,” the musical “Hairspray” and “Mother Road,” a continuation of Steinbeck’s “Grapes of Wrath.”

“We’re excited to provide our high school drama club students with the opportunity to experience exceptional theater,” Smith said.

Angel Carpenter is a reporter for the Blue Mountain Eagle. She can be contacted at angel@bmeagle.com or 541-575-0710.

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