By: Keegan Douglass
This year is Attleboro High School’s (AHS) twentieth year in a row hosting an in-school one acts festival. On Saturday, 21 May, five short plays will be presented in AHS’s Bray Auditorium. These plays are both selected and directed by seniors of the drama club – this year the shows are directed by seniors Elizabeth Howard, Sarah Manlove, Sam O’Donnell, Brynna Turner and Thomas Friedlander.
The plays are overseen by science teacher and drama coach Mr. Peter Tarsi. “These plays really are the culmination of the seniors’ experiences in the AHS drama club. It’s more or less their journey,” Tarsi said.
Tarsi began the One Acts Festival because of his high school experiences. “The year before my first year as drama coach, some of the seniors wanted one more events before they graduated, so I suggested that they put on their own show. I got the idea from the one acts festival we did in my high school,” he said.
This festival is often a time for AHS drama club alumni to come back and reminisce on their own experiences. “Well, I came back for the first four years after graduation because some of my friends were still in high school, so it was nice to see them again, especially in their natural element. I also spent a few years as Tarsi’s backup DJ for the shindig, so that was cool, coming back as an ‘adult participant’ or whatever they called it in the programs,” said AHS alumni Preston Masterson, who won best ensemble for his show “Almost the Bride of Dracula.”
Both the short nature of the plays and the comfort of working with peer directors makes the One Acts Festival a perfect time for freshmen or other AHS students who have wanted to become involved with drama club to begin their respective acting careers.
“It’s a really good opportunity to express my acting ability,” said freshman Corinne Hill.
For those seniors directing who plan on majoring in theater upon their graduation, the One Acts Festival is a perfect outlet to gain experience in both directing and the technical aspect of acting.
“It’s honesty has such an invigorating experience. It’s interesting to finally take a step away from the stage and see the entire picture from the audience; it’s just a new point of view I’ve never experienced before,” said O’Donnell, who is directing the play called “Lock In.”
Some alumni found the experience helpful in discovering the difficulty of the directing theater. “I had fun directing my own play [“Order of the Keys”], but it could be very frustrating at times.”