The Wylie Theatre Department’s One-Act Play is about as different from its Fall Musical as two stories can get.
And the change is allowing the young actors to really show off their talents.
In the fall, the students were dancing and singing to the light-hearted Mary Poppins, but this spring, they are fighting, drinking and murdering in By The Bog of Cats.
The difference is particularly striking for Anna Claire Boone, a Wylie junior.
Anna Claire played the popular Mary Poppins and also plays Hester, the lead in Bog of Cats. And while Mary was cool, collected and always confident, Hester is mentally unstable, abandoned and mistreated.
“It’s a very distinct change,” Anna Claire said. “Mary was a lot more vocally demanding. Both are pretty physically demanding. Hester gets thrown around a lot on stage. I have a lot of battle scars.”
Freshman Kyla Sutton also had to switch gears for Bog of Cats. She played Jane in Mary Poppins and plays Hester’s daughter, Josie, in the one-act play.
“Jane was a little bit older and knew what she believed in where Josie is younger and is just beginning to experience this world,” Kyla said. “It’s really helped me to build my acting ability to play two different roles that are bipolar.”
The play did well at its district competition, earning the right to advance to bi-district and earning Overall Outstanding Technical Crew honors. Josh Hervey was named Outstanding Technician, and Anna Claire and Kobe George both were named to the All-Star Cast. Wes Horn was named Honorable Mention All-Star Cast.
Results of the bi-district round were not available at press time. Check WylieGrowl.com for updates.
One-act play season is generally a highlight of the year for the Wylie Theatre Department. Students love participating in a smaller show where they develop closer relationships.
And they love performing for high stakes.
“It gets intense,” Kobe said. “In the process of doing the show, I’m always like what can I do better. Are the judges liking what I’m doing? It’s very nerve-racking. Do your best or go home.”
Last year Wylie qualified for state for the first time in school history and that trip to state has served as motivation for this year.
“It’s set a bunch of goals for us trying to relive that experience,” Kobe said. “We’ve jumped up to 5A so it’s new challenges. It’s a whole new competition. That’s kind of fun though. We get to jump out of our comfort zone. It’s definitely given us an incentive.”
Anna Claire said not going to state her freshman year also serves as an incentive.
“We’ve experienced going to state, and we’ve experienced not going to state,” she said. “Both of them are driving forces. It sets an expectation from the rest of the school and from your friends and from ourselves.”
Regardless of what happens in the competition, the one-act play is a wonderful experience, Kyla said.
“It’s so fun,” she said. “I really love getting closer with everyone. I love one-act play. I actually like musical better. I’m just a musical gal. But one-act is near and dear to my heart.”
Anna Claire agreed. She loves the musical, but there is something special about one-act play.
“We get forced into a family, especially in a show like this where there is so much contact involved,” she said. “It forces you together. And these are like my favorite people.”
Other members of the cast are Hunter Harris, Kymber Pyeatt, Mattie Smith, Kathlyn Messer, Marley Gamble, Wesley Horn, Bradley Medlock, Dhury Paresh, Joshua Larum, Melia Messer, Zion Burton and Ashley Fenton. The alternates are Katie Shaw, Gracie Wilson and Case Kirby. The crew includes McKenna Jones, Madison Stein, Joshua Hervey, Landon Truax, and Ashley Saenz.