The Clinton High School theatre class is in its last days of rehearsals for their fall production of “Antigone.” The production will be held in Prestage Auditorium on the campus of Clinton High School, Thursday through Saturday, Nov. 1-3. The play will begin at 7 p.m. each night and admission in $5.
In conjunction with the play production, the Clinton Thespian troupe is taking part in the Trick or Treat So Kids Can Eat program. This is a community service project for the group where the students will collect canned and dry goods for local charities and food band.
The food drive which began on Oct. 24 continues through the weekend of the production. Anyone bringing non-perishable food items to the donation booth can either receive a treat or donate a least five items and receive a free ticket to one of the performance of Antigone. The donations will be shared with the Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeastern North Carolina. The troupe is trying to win the title of “Leaders in the Fight Against Hunger.”
The play “Antigone,” is a Greek tragedy written by Sophocles.
Natalie Pope, the theatre arts teacher at Clinton, shared a brief synopsis of what the play is about.
Based on Greek mythology, Antigone is a daughter of the unintentional incestuous marriage between King Oedipus of Thebes and his mother, Jocasta. Antigone’s brothers are killed in battle and the king allows one a proper burial and the other was to be left for nature to takes its course and let the animals eat the corpse. However, she disobeys the king and gives him a proper burial. For this she was sentenced to be isolated in a room with no outside contact from anyone. Eventually she hangs herself because she cannot be with her beloved Haemon. As the tragedy continues others are forced to kill themselves due to the unhappiness of being without the one they loved. The king, Creon, eventually realizes the error of his ways but it is too late to save the others.
“The students have really been working hard on this play. I chose “Antigone” because it is actually something the ninth grade students read in literature. In selecting a Greek tragedy, I am hoping that the students will be exposed to more aspects of the theatre and to appreciate all types of theatrical work. It has been a challenge for the students to learn the dialogue but they have had to translate their lines into their own words so they can understand what they are talking about in this play. It has been a great experience for them thus far,” asserted Pope.
There are 15 students in the cast from all four grades. Some of the cast shared their thoughts regarding acting in the Greek tragedy.
Senior Steven Williams plays the role of Tiresias, who is the king’s blind fortuneteller.
“This play is different from any I have done prior. It is much more serious in theme that the others I have been in. I usually play a much more humorous character and that has made this play more of a challenge for me. Although when the audience sees me in costume they may chuckle a bit,” explained Williamson. “I am enjoying being in Antigone because it is allowing me to experience other types of theatrical parts. It is also a challenge to play a visually impaired person because I cannot make eye contact with anyone. The audience will have to rely on our acting skills to understand what is going on in this play,” adds Steven.
The Clinton senior also shared that he liked the dialogue of the play and the seriousness found in the play but dislike the seriousness of his character as he likes to insert humor when he can but not in this production.
The Sentinel is played by freshman Caleb Butler. Butler is new to Clinton having transferred her from southern Georgia. Caleb shared that he has been cast in several plays prior to his first at Clinton.
“Antigone is a big change from what I am accustomed too. There is so much dialogue in Greek plays and not as much action. Speeches are a large part of what goes on in the play and it is important that we depict the story through our actions as we speak our lines. I have found being a part of this production to be a good experience for me. It has helped me to expand my theatrical experiences,” stated Butler.
Caleb expressed that his biggest like of doing Antigone was that the play is a step up from the musical and could be identified as a more proper play. He also added that the long dialogues were is least favorite part of the play.
“I do think it will be a good production and I hope the audience will understand what we are trying to convey through our portrayals in the play,” said Butler.
The king’s messenger is played by junior Jenifer Hernandez. She is excited to be in a Greek play.
“I really like that this is a Greek play. I enjoy Greek mythology and this play is a way for me to be a part of something I enjoy. I truly like the language that is used in the production. The only draw back I see is that the play is so short…less than an hour,” cited Hernandez. “I think the audience will enjoy the play especially if they are familiar with the story. It might help someone that has never heard the story to read over the play before coming so they will understand what is taking place better,” remarked Jenifer.
Pope is excited for her students and is hoping the public will come out and support the production and help the students with their food drive.
The cast of “Antigone” is as follows: Antigone - Lillie Turlington; Isemene - Kathy Gutierrez; Creon - Issac Cousar; Sentinel - Caleb Baker; First Senator - Stephanie Wides; Haemon - Randolph Barnes; Tiresias - Steven Williams; Messenger - Jenifer Hernandez; The Chorus: Ana Jarmilo, Caroline Czorkowska, Krystin Turlington, Rachel Grimes, Dalyn Padgett and Lexi Valenti; Assistant director - Shekinah King and Stage Manager - Haley Parker.