One Acts


Emily Hamilton

Student-directed One Acts were held in the Studio Theater of LHS on March 16-17.

One Acts are student-led and directed performances at LHS, composed of the perfect combination of thoughtful, meaningful, emotional and hilarious short plays. This year’s shows took place in Libertyville High School’s Studio Theater on March 16 and 17.
Alex Hibbard-Brown opened the performance with her co-producer, Philip Nauman, and each performance was introduced by the directors of the show. There were occasional, intermittent comedy duos between plays to allow for set changes, which also gave actors the chance to gain more experience on stage. These included energetic Spartan cheerleaders, Will Anderson and Kelsey Collins; Hibbard-Brown and Nauman cursed by the song “Total Eclipse of the Heart;” and two nerdy “gopher girls” played by Mary Piedrahita and Sayre DeBruler.
The first one act was “Quigley,” a short play by Anna DeNoia, a graduate of LHS and former DOI staff member, which her sister, Julia DeNoia, directed, along with Linh Tran. In this play, Robin, played by Avery Vang, struggles to understand the intentions of her boyfriend and lab partner, Jason, played by Albert Sterner. Vang gave a touching, emotional performance as she expressed the insecurities and doubts of her character about her relationship, and Sterner did likewise as Jason lovingly comforted Robin.
After this, there was a hilarious interlude skit performed by Anderson and Collins dressed up as Spartan cheerleaders, mimicking a popular “Saturday Night Live” skit from the 1990s. They energetically performed cheers for what seemed to be a chess game. They performed over-the-top, amusing cheers that had the audience in tears from laughter.
Trinity Carlisle and Michael Graham directed the next play, entitled “Dinner with the MacGuffins,” with a Truman Show-like plot where James, played by EJ Chen, notices the audience watching the play when a cell phone goes off in the crowd. James’s grandpa, played by Jackson Sanderson, got a lot of laughs from the audience.
Following that was “Drugs are Bad,” which was directed by Michael Campeau. In this one act, everything is reversed; the parents of a teenager treat education and healthy habits the way most people would treat drugs and rebellion. The parents express their shock, disappointment and anger when they discover that their son cancelled his Playboy subscription, listens to Simon and Garfunkel, and flushes his grandma’s “Christmas weed” down the toilet every year.
The next one act, written by Mr. Dave Lapish, an English teacher at LHS, was called “Sockland,” and Jacob Kemp, a DOI staff member, and Will Neason directed it. This play was a humorous story about a suburban dad who fell through his dryer into another dimension inhabited by sentient socks and learns a valuable lesson. The audience seemed to thoroughly enjoy the performance and on Friday night, students started chanting “Dave” at the end of the show in support of Mr. Lapish, who was also in attendance.
The next performance resembled the movie “Inside Out,” in that the audience saw different aspect of the main character’s personality trying to work together to have a successful date. It was called “Reservations” and was directed by Alice Lillydahl and Bailey Latka. The amusing interactions between each side of the protagonist’s personality earned a lot of laughs from the audience.
“Ghost Town” came next, and it was the second play directed by Tran and DeNoia. This one act was a more emotional and heart-wrenching scene. A theater worker, played by Rachel Erdmann, struggling to get over the loss of her father, tries to help Margo, a little girl at the movies, played by Allie Parker, come to terms with her own loss. Both actresses gave very convincing and passionate performances.
The final one act was a sequel to a scene performed during the show last year, and it was directed by Sophie Rollins and Erin McCane. “Check Please Take 2” was a humorous play highlighting the parallels between a couple after they breakup and venture out into the dating world. Allen Liu and Maja Gavrilovic played the exes and both gave wonderful performances as their characters became increasingly annoyed with the dating pool.
One striking feature from this one act was how Gavrilovic’s character was bisexual but this was never even mentioned. She went on dates just the same as her ex did, and I think the casualness of this was a great step towards making this more accepted and normalized.
One Acts were very successful and had full audiences both nights. The audience deeply enjoyed the performances of both hilarious and touching plays.