by Analicia Cass/Staff Writer
Photo: Jacob Eddington, 12, Hayden Bottorf, 11, Tanner Hord, 11, and Rylee Henson, 12, act out a scene from Once Upon a Mattress.
As it comes to the end of the school year, every group is having their ‘lasts.’ Last game. Last performance. Last meeting. Last play. And GCHS’ last production of the year, Once Upon A Mattress, was thought to be an all-around success for the drama department.
After weeks of preparation, the show took the stage. Being like a unique version of The Princess and the Pea, the show was a hit. The narrator of the play began by explaining that the show was the true version of The Princess and the Pea — without all of the fairy tale parts.
The play shows Prince Dauntless and his parents – the king and queen – looking for a suitable princess to marry him. Throughout the story the king is cursed and unable to speak, but the queen never stops. Each time a new contender comes along, the Queen tests the woman of her eligibility and, after twelve failed attempts, Princess Winnifred is the only one able to pass. After she passes and weds the prince, all the workers and noble people of the castle celebrate because they were forbidden to wed until Prince Dauntless had. At the end, the king’s curse is broken and he can speak, but the Queen is unable.
The play makes for a good laugh and an interesting story. It draws you in and holds you there until the end. With multiple different parts working all at the same time to make one larger story, you can’t help but wonder what happens next.
The play is set in a large castle and constantly has something going on. There are many characters on stage and many things happening at once. Spotlights on a few people, while more in the background carry on another part of the storyline. “I am always checking up on my crew and making sure they don’t have any questions and that they understand what they’re doing,” notes head of lights, Kylie Rodgers, 10.
The set has many parts to it as well. Not all moving parts, but all just as important as any other thing happening on stage. If something were to go wrong, the audience would notice, so techies have to keep on their toes even when they’re not moving something on or off stage. “What I like to do personally is inform everyone involved in what happened first, then fix it. If it’s a big item like a desk, I’ll just attach it to my best ability and solve it fully after the show- like a temporary fix!” says co-head of set, Sam Peterson, 11.
As the shows began on Friday, April 13 and ended Sunday, April 15, with one show a day, there was only improvement. With each night, something got better. And to put on a big show like this, with large audiences, the cast and crew can all agree they get something out of it, too. “I love seeing the crowd roll in and when they leave, their smiling faces,” said Rodgers. Although techies backstage aren’t seen, they get equal reward too. “What we get the reward of is creating something and seeing it in action,” said Peterson.