Leyden high schools kick off theater season
Heidi Reinhofer as Dede Lovewell runs screaming across the stage during a scene in "The Girls of the Garden Club" Sept. 13 at East Leyden High School. | Jon Langham~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 21, 2012 2:02PM
FRANKLIN PARK — The Leyden High Schools will start their theater season with a double bill.
On Oct. 12, 13, 19 and 20, “The Girls of the Garden Club” will be performed at East Leyden High School. The comedy by John Patrick is about the competition to become president of a suburban gardening club.
On Oct. 12 and 13, the student directed play “Crossing the Line” will be performed with “The Girls of the Garden Club.”
“It’s a murder-mystery involving teenagers in a small town,” said Mark Bernstein, sponsor of the West Leyden Theater Guild. “It deals with alcoholism and revenge. We’re hoping to take that one to the Illinois Theater Festival in January.”
Details are still being worked out for a Christmas show to take place on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1. The name of the show has not yet been decided.
March 8, 9, 15, and 16 will be the musical “Footloose.” As in the 1984 movie featuring Kevin Bacon, the musical is about a teenager from Chicago who moves to a small town where music and dancing has been outlawed.
Roughly 150 students – including the cast, crew, chorus and orchestra – will participate.
Educators are still determining the spring 2013 play. It will take place on April 3, 4, 10 and 11.
Whatever the play, educators are going wide, Bernstein said.
“Our goal is to involve them in every part of the theater-making process so by the time they leave us, they would feel very comfortable in a college program or a community theater setting,” Bernstein said.
Creating student productions can be a challenge.
“We’re almost all the time dealing with people who don’t have a lot of experience with theater,” Bernstein said. “So we’re teaching them the fundamentals at the same time we’re creating the product.”