At the Regional One Act Festival at Oceanside High School on Saturday, March 7th, the Lincoln Academy Theater’s 2015 production of “The Trojan Women” placed first out of four schools in the region in Class B, and had the highest point score of all eight regional schools competing in both Class A and Class B. The play will move on to state level competition later this month.
The Maine Drama Festival One Act Competition sets some stringent requirements for entries. Each play must be under 40 minutes long, sets must be constructed and struck in under 5 minutes, and all the costumes, set pieces, and other equipment such as musical instruments must fit through an ordinary-size door. Violation of any of these requirements results in disqualification of a play from competition.
“The Trojan Women” is a 2500 year-old tragedy written by the Greek playwright Euripides. It tells the story of the women who survived the Trojan war: the widows, mothers, and daughters of Trojan warriors killed in battle, as they face the destruction of their home and their imminent departure as slaves to the Greek victors.
According to Lincoln Academy theater teacher and One Act Director Griff Braley, “Like all of the Greek texts, this is massive challenge for students as they perform very difficult dramatic material and conquer a text written entirely in poetic form. I am hugely proud of the work done by these students, who will now begin the process of honing their performances for a higher level of competition. They continue to learn and grow with each step of the process.”
The ensemble cast and crew of the Trojan Women designed the set, lighting, costumes, and sound effects of the production, which was shortened to 40 minutes from the original 80 minute play. “Judges were very complimentary of the strong dedication to ensemble work of the entire cast,” says Braley. “One adjudicator gave the show an almost perfect score, calling the performance ‘completely professional,’ with production values that he would ‘expect to see in New York theater.’”
In addition to awarding the LA play first prize, the panel of judges also selected LA sophomore Thalia Eddyblouin as a member of the all-festival cast for her role as Andromache, widow of Hector and mother of his ill-fated son. The entire cast and crew received an award for the highest production values of the weekend.
The cast and crew of “The Trojan Women” will compete with 9 other schools at the State One Act Festival on March 20 and 21. That festival will take place at Stearns High School in Millinocket If chosen as one of the top two plays in the state, the cast will go on to show their production at the New England One Act Festival, held in April, in Camden, Maine.
In order to help fund their travel to the State Competition, the cast will perform the play on Thursday, March 19 at 6:30 pm in the Poe Theater. A $5 suggested admission will benefit meals, lodging, and travel to States.
Lincoln Academy has an excellent record over the years, advancing to the State Festival eight of the last nine years and to the New Englands in 2012. Griff Braley has directed all of these shows, but always credits Lincoln Academy students and teachers for the school’s long record of success. ”We’re thankful to have tremendous support from our school community as we move forward,” says Braley. “We could not do this without an incredible amount of hard work, not only by the actors, but by many contributors whom you don’t see on stage.”