By Tory-Kale Schulz
One Act Play Advisor
Since the first casual conversation I had with Principal Paul DeMorett last fall regarding an extra-curricular activity called “One Act Play,” I have been flattered with the support we have received from numerous people and groups. School administration wholly embraced the fine arts proposal from the start, the School Board voiced their support swiftly and confidently, the Arlin Falck Foundation acted generously, local businesses have pledged support in various ways and many individuals have approached me offering any help needed – all to assure that our school presents an extra-curricular activity that differs from our large and successful athletics offering.
Because our school has never had a One Act Play team before, developing our program has started with informing people of some basics.
For starters, while competitive One Act Play is new to Caledonia, it is certainly not a new activity statewide. In fact, it has been a Minnesota State High School League sanctioned competition since 1949, with schools across multiple classes being crowned state champions annually.
Next, One Act Play has many rules to follow. From the total number of students we can have on our roster, to the length of the production, to the amount of time we have to set up our set before the lights must rise and many, many more. In short, One Act Play is a focused and dedicated competitive team ready to challenge other schools for a title and not just a group of people who want to bring a script to life on stage.
Imagine working tirelessly for months on something, only to have one performance – one game – to decide the success of an entire season. One Act Play does not have the luxury of competing in a full schedule of events to determine how we rank among the competition. In truth, we have been preparing since mid-November for one day – Jan. 25 – to be the best. If we are not, our season ends. If we are, we focus on two more “wins” to have our name placed on the sign out on the highway of former Warriors state championship teams.
This is the high-pressure world of competitive theater, where one missed line, one mistimed switch of the wrong light, one faulty prop can change the outcome of the one competition we have to succeed.
All this being said, our group of greatly talented, extremely confident and very motivated actors, actresses and technicians are ready to showcase what we will present at the Subsection One Act Play Festival later this month in Rushford-Peterson. All those who support their Warriors and the fine arts are invited to a dress rehearsal performance of Charles George’s classic drama in one act, “The Darkest Hour” on Wednesday, Jan. 22 in the MS/HS Auditorium. Total run time of the play is approximately 25 minutes and the lights rise on the stage at 6 p.m. Doors open at 5:20 p.m.
The cost of admittance will be $3 for a general admission ticket, and to help ensure the long-term growth and viability of the One Act Play, we will be selling $10 tickets with preferred seating to patrons who wish to give more.
Iconic actor Morgan Freeman once said, “When I was a teenager, I began to settle into school because I’d discovered the extracurricular activities that interested me: music and theater.”
Perhaps our stage will be the start of someone’s successful acting career, but at the very least, the opportunity provided by the fine arts and afforded by many supporters in our community will help our young people cultivate skills that they will carry their entire life.