Watauga High School Playmakers Win Honors at NC High School Play Festival

Published Friday, November 13, 2015 at 2:00 pm

Walker praised the students for their “amazing acting and technical work on Richard Cory.  We’re proud of what they achieved and grateful that the judges recognized the quality of their production of this powerful and stunning drama.  The Playmakers have brought its full impact to the stage.” Playmakers 2015

Walker and Sarah Miller are the two drama teachers at Watauga High School.  The school has established a strong tradition of excellence in theatre and its students regularly win honors and awards for the high quality of their productions.

The Playmakers will presentRichard Coryin Boone one last time before heading off to the state finals and Walker encourages “everyone who has ever had any interest in theatre” to come and enjoy the show.   That performance will be at 8 p.m. on Nov. 17 in Ross Auditorium at Watauga High School.

The play was written by A. R. Gurney based on the poem “Richard Cory” by Edwin Arlington Robinson.  It consists of a series of vignettes that reveal the life of a man who seems to have everything the world has to offer.  He is handsome, rich, successful in his law practice, respected in the community and an idealized husband and father.  And yet, as the play progresses, it becomes apparent that his position in life has brought him growing dissatisfaction and unease. Ultimately, it shows Cory’s struggle to maintain his reputation, deal with his alienating friends and family, and make sense of the changing world. While the play does not contain adult language, it may contain material not appropriate for all ages.

In addition to the usual challenges of staging any drama, the High School Play Festival imposes its own unique standards that require teams to operate with a high level of organization and precision from start to finish.  Each production is given exactly 45 minutes to set up their play, perform it and clear the stage of all sets, people, and materials.  Shows are scheduled at intervals of 75 minutes, allowing about 30 minutes between productions for the judges to give feedback on each play to the actors, director, and crew.

The NCTC High School Play Festival is the largest high school theatre event in the Southeast, withthis year’s performances featuring 3,000 students from 90 schools presenting 118 different plays at eight regional sites.  Watauga High School was one of those sites and hosted more than 300 actors, directors and technicians from 11 different high schools on Nov. 6 and 7.

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