Spring Break is a time to relax whether at the beach, enjoying a mini vacation or just taking a break from school and work, but that is not the case for the Alice High School Drama students.
The Drama Club is spending the week preparing for the UIL One Act Play Competition, which is on March 27 at Tuloso-Midway High School.
“The kids are putting on an Edgar Allen Poe play,” said Drama Club sponsor and teacher Darleen Totten. “They had to research his life and the story.”
The cast is made up of 24 hyperactive and happy high school students who will perform Maelstrom. The students will be competing against five other schools. The top three schools will advance to district in April 2.
Maelstrom may be the hallucination of the dying Edgar Allan Poe, delirious in his last moments. A fast paced and surreal mixture of incidents from his life and work, real people like his wife Virginia, Longfellow, the actors Junius Brutus Booth and Edwin Forrest, and the murder victim Mary Rogers mix with the Red Death, the Raven, Hop Frog, and an Ourang-Outang to create a unique theatrical adventure that is horrifying and funny.
Valerie Chapa, junior, plays Eliza Poe and Hop Frog. “Hop Frog is very wacky and plays an instrument like me,” she said.
Junior Carlo Romanesques plays Edgar Allen Poe and looks over his lines daily while he sips on a Sprite to prepare for his first play.
“There are no small parts,” Totten stated.
Tripp Valadez, a junior, is a techie who works hard always going above and beyond, Totten said. He takes pictures and video for the One Act Play. Esai Cordova, a sophomore, made penguins that represent death which is his favorite part because of all the creepy characters, he explained.
“We put in all our effort and work as hard as you can regardless of the part,” Chapa said.
Juniors Pooga Bhakta and Megan Blair build and repair props. They have to continually repair props that break or come apart such as the trees. “After competition we may have to fix our props depending on what the judges say we need to improve on,” Blair said.
Everyone on the team spoke about team work and just enjoying each others company. “We encourage each other and work as one,” Cordova said.