Another non-public performance, today at Lorain High. Our contact, Greg Antus, found several very helpful student volunteers to help us get the set up. Greg has been a valuable asset at Lorain High (formerly Lorain Admiral King) for years, and works very hard to ensure the tour runs smoothly.
Years ago when I was an actor-teacher, my first Death of a Salesman residency was at Lorain Admiral King. Part of the lesson plan includes an improvisation where it was necessary for me to be entirely irrational with my teenage child, played by one of the students. I remember the very first class of the day, I was supposed to be entirely unyielding and unsympathetic while this high school junior girl told me she was pregnant. She began to cry and I entirely folded. It was hilarious to witness.
While Greg had prepared his students for the performance they were about to see today, as often is the case a larger number of students were added to our audience by emptying out the study hall. While I approve of exposing as many students as possible to the fine arts, especially when arts programs have been eliminated in so many of our public school systems, it can be challenging to hold the attention of students who have not been told why they are there, or anything at all about what they are about to see.
Having said that, I believe our mystery was successfully mysterious to them, as they were a very good audience, into what was going on, entertained, amused and impressed. We had a great talkback following, though brief, as their school day was about to end.
"The Mysterious Affair at Styles" is now available from Playscripts, Inc.