Huntington High School drama club members will take the stage this weekend for three performances of the group’s production of Mary Chase’s award winning 1944 play “Harvey.”
The actors and stage crew members have mastered their roles during weeks of rehearsals under the encouraging eyes of drama club advisor Michael Schwendemann and his team of professionals.
Performances are set for Friday at 7:30 p.m. and again on Saturday at 2 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m. all in the high school auditorium. The facility is handicapped accessible. Tickets are available at the door priced at $10 for the general public and $5 students with ID cards. Senior citizens (aged 65 and up) will be admitted free to all performances.
The cast includes Sarah Biernacki (Myrtle Mae Simmons), Abby Semelsberger (Veta Louise Simmons), Keenan Lyons (Elwood P. Dowd), Aria Hannah (Miss Johnson), Katherine Eichenberger (Mrs. Ethel Chavenet), Natalie Ciccone (Ruth Kelly, RN), Brendan Garcia (Duane Wilson), Josh Avidor (Lyman Sanderson, MD), Robert Jean-Gilles (William R. Chumley, MD), Charlotte Simon (Betty Chumley), Ryan Aguirre (Judge Omar Gaffney), Dylan Brinn (EJ Lofgren) and Cobin Black as Harvey.
“Rehearsals for the show are going super well,” Ms. Semelsberger said. “This cast and crew is fantastic and I’m so happy with the way things are turning out. It’s going be a great show.”
Theater-goers are in for a real treat this Friday and Saturday. The high school auditorium has sensational lighting and an exceptional sound system. It’s one of the premier facilities on Long Island with an enormous stage.
The show’s student directors are junior Gabriel Moskovitch and senior Maggie Imperato. “The whole cast is doing great,” Mr. Moskovitch said. “They are all working so hard and I am loving how it is turning out. It is a given that we have had our ups and downs, but we are getting there.”
The actors and stagehands are all approaching the show with marked professionally, even though the teenagers are really all amateurs. Audiences won’t be disappointed this weekend.
“This is quite possibly one of the best plays we have done at the high school because of its incredibly comedic moments,” Mr. Lyons said. “I feel this amazing cast has taken this important aspect to a new level. Everyone should try to make the effort to come. You will not be disappointed.”
Ms. Chase won the 1945 Pulitzer Prize in Drama for “Harvey.” It’s the story of a perfect gentleman, Elwood P. Dowd and his best friend, Harvey; a pooka, who is a six-foot tall, invisible rabbit. When Elwood begins introducing Harvey around town, his embarrassed sister, Veta Louise and her daughter, Myrtle Mae, determine to commit Elwood to a sanitarium.
However, a mistake is made and Veta is committed rather than Elwood. Eventually, the mistake is realized and a frantic search begins for Elwood and the invisible pooka, which ends with Elwood appearing, voluntarily, at the sanitarium. In the end, however, Veta realizes that she loves her brother and his invisible his best friend just as they are and doesn’t want either of them to change.