Leclair and Shakespeare Return with Romeo and Juliet Together (And Alive!) At Last

As the school year starts again, South’s sports players gear up for their games while the actors prepare for the fall play. Ms. LeClair, the new director of the Titan Thespians, has announced that the fall show will be Romeo and Juliet Together (And Alive!) At Last.

The show is about an 8th grade boy, Pete Saltz, played by junior Tyler Gittelman, and an 8th grade girl, Anabell Stackpoole, played by sophomore Emily Gallagher, whose characters both have crushes on each other, but they are too shy to notice. Pete’s best friend, Ed Sitrow, played by junior Ben McLaughlin, creates an elaborate plan to get them to notice each other by deciding to put on an abridged version of the classic tragedy Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, casting Anabell and Pete in the title roles.

Another senior, Cassandra Fox, who is the stage manager for the show, said that the play is a “modern take on a classic tale” and is fun “because it is Romeo and Juliet but for eighth graders.” Cassandra is not new to the stage here at South. She has come back for her third year as stage manager for the show and is excited to be back.

The first act is comprised of Anabell and Pete getting the cast together and writing out their abridged script. The second act is where the play finally comes together and then inevitably falls apart. Ms. LeClair said “the clash between [the characters’] earnest intentions and the horrible disaster that is their final product” is her favorite part of the show.

This show is different from the other shows that South has had in recent years because it is a slapstick comedy, which is comedy based on clumsy actions by the characters and embarrassing events that happen to them. Previous shows that Ms. LeClair has directed at South include The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Night Thoreau Spent in Jail, Jekyll and Hyde, Seussical, and her favorite, 12 Angry Jurors.

Ms. LeClair said that she wanted to do this show because it has a good amount of roles, 34 in total, and would be fun for South students. “The fall play is always difficult because there are always so many wonderful actors, and it breaks my heart that there are never enough spots,” said Ms. LeClair.

This is why the school is doing the “full-fledged” version of this play as opposed to the abridged version she has done in her theatre classes and in previous out-of-school shows.

With the hardest part of the whole process, the auditions, behind her, Ms. LeClair is excited for the process of putting the show together through rehearsals. “It’s all about the process,” she said, “watching the characters becoming real.” By the end of the rehearsal period, she will just be “another outsider in the seats” watching the show too.

As fun as it is for Ms. LeClair to watch, CB South junior Andrew Cohen believes it’s just as fun onstage to perform. When asked about his role as the villain, Albert Hamilton, Andrew said, “Boy do I love playing the villain!” Andrew, who has been interested in acting since the seventh grade, tried out for the show because of his success in last year’s performances of Voices from the High School and Pirates of Penzance.

Senior Nick Goodyear plays Tom Hayes, Ed’s best friend. Nick, who is new to the stage at South, added that he tried out for the show because “it’s senior year, time to really get involved. Not that I’m not already [involved], but [the play] is a good thing to be involved in.”

The audience will have a much easier time getting into the shows now that CB South Titan Thespians is moving to online ticket sales in addition to selling tickets at the door. According to Ms. LeClair, “Interested parties can go to brownpapertickets.com and purchase and reserve seats with a credit card.” This will be helpful because online ticketing will make the seating easier and more available to the public.

When it comes to the audience, Ms. LeClair said that they should be “prepared for a huge range of talent along with love threads, buddy threads, legitimate and fake Shakespeare” when seeing the show. Ms. LeClair also added that they will most certainly “have a good time and there will be lots of laughter.”