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Spring Play “Angel Street” Takes FHN’s Stage With Two Casts


Credit to Sam Watkins

The leads in Cast B take their bows at the end of their performance.

By Sydney Ellison and Chloe Horstman

FHN’s Drama Club is in the midst of performing their spring play, a psychological thriller called Angel Street written by Patrick Hamilton. This play focuses on a wife in the Victorian era who is led to believe she is losing her mind by her husband, who gaslights her to keep her quiet about a crime he committed. The club has already performed the play four times last weekend and will perform again at 7 p.m. on April 23 and 24. The tickets are $5 and can be purchased through the website and the show will stream through the website On the Stage. 

To combat the contact tracing sweep that quarantined most of the on and off stage performers before the student written play ‘Etched X’ premiered, the cast and crew workers were divided up into two rotating teams for rehearsals and performances. Cast A performed on April 15 and 17 at 7 pm and is preparing for another performance on the 23 at 7 p.m., while Cast B performed on April 16 at 7 p.m. and 17 at 1 p.m. and will perform again on the 24 at 7 p.m. 

“We had the same amount of time that we would usually use for a regular play, but it’s split up everyday,” drama club president, senior Megan Miller, said. “Our rehearsal time was cut in half, with breaks in between each rehearsal, so that’s where some of the challenge comes in. We have to still be ready for show night of course, but a lot of us feel way underprepared. But of course we all know that it’s going to be good. It’s the same with every single show, magic always happens on show night.”

Miller plays the female lead, Bella Manningham, in Cast B, a character experiencing intense emotions as she feels her sanity slip through her fingers. She enjoys exploring different ways of acting out the feelings her character goes through and challenging herself to portray the feelings in a believable way to the audience. 

“My character is an extremely emotional woman,” Miller said. “She’s literally being convinced that she’s going crazy, even though she’s not. She makes very good observations about her surroundings, but in doing so she emits a lot of emotions. She’s like ‘I don’t actually know if what I’m saying is true or not’ because her husband has her convinced that she can do nothing right. There’s a lot of really intense scenes and there’s a lot of physical scuffles.” 

In addition to having a lead part, Miller is also the student director for the performance of cast A. Both demanding roles have allowed her to see the production not only through the eyes of an actor, as she’s used to, but also see the play as the audience would. 

“I’m directing one cast and being in the other cast,” Miller said. “While both casts are very different as far as who plays which character in what way, it’s really interesting to watch the show and see how certain movements look from the audience and being able to implement that into my performance. That kind of thing is super interesting in a way because now, I’m looking at it from both perspectives.” 

Because the play is performed by two different casts, operated by two different crews and directed by two different directors, there are differences noticeable immediately. 

“It ended up being a lot of differences because we have two different student directors,” Miller said. “With each cast, different things look different. So within the first minute of the play you’re noticing differences. One of the cast uses accents and the other one doesn’t. It’s stuff like that and blocking differences. Jenna Weber plays her Bella character as a broken, battered down woman, [whereas] my Bella still has some spark or some kind of frustration in a way. My Mr. Manningham [in cast B] is very forceful, he’s a very loud and outward person, but the other Mr. Manningham [in cast A] is more psychological and kind of towers in a way, but uses more the intellectual plane with what they say in the show.”

The first few performances went well according to sophomore stage manager Trinity Boschert. The audience reacted positively to the serious topic portrayed in the play.

“All in all, I think it went pretty well, the actors had their lines memorized and everything backstage went smoothly,” Boschert said.

There are two performances left but Boschert feels confident everything will go as planned. 

“For the first performance there was definitely a lot of stress because it was the first time doing a show in 5 months and I was afraid somebody would mess up and we wouldn’t be able to recover from it but after the first show and after it went really well I felt a little more confident in both the actors and the crews that this would be a good show,” Boschert said.

To see more photos from the performance, check out the Angel Street gallery here.