FOREST CITY | The Forest City Middle School will perform “The History of Dating” as their spring play at 7 p.m. on Friday, March 15 in the Boman Fine Arts Center.
The play, directed by Kari Olson and Kris Linder, is a fun lecture on the history of dating, starting with the cavemen through to the 21st century.
The play was chosen because it has lots of different characters, which allowed for a lot of students to get involved in the play and not just a small number.
“We could have a smaller cast where kids are doing multiple parts or we could have a huge cast where we get a lot of kids involved, so we weren’t just stuck with a certain – whoever wanted to be involved, we could get them a part,” Kari said.
There are currently 38 students in the cast, but there are a few who are helping with setting, lighting and other production aspects for a total of about 45 kids overall, according to Kari.
The professors leading the adventure are played by eighth-grader Cooper Littrell and seventh-grader Brooke Olson, who play Professors Curio and Amore, respectively.
Littrell said his favorite scene of the play is the portion that takes place in the 80s.
“There’s singing and we get to react to the people singing,” he said. “It’s kind of hard not to laugh, but we have to stay serious.”
Professor Curio, as the lead professor, must be serious throughout the play because he wants a Lecture of the Year Award, an aspect of the role that Littrell said he doesn’t especially like.
“I kind of wish that my character was a little bit more funnier in the beginning, but overall I really like my role,” he said.
Professor Amore, on the other hand, is a little sillier and is more involved in the acts, including dancing with the other characters, something Brooke said she enjoys.
“I am more in the moment, and I’m more on the goofier side and stuff like that,” she said.
Littrell said the best part of the play for him is the atmosphere of the people around them and the support they give for the fine arts.
“I really like the atmosphere because my peers are encouraging us, and it just keeps us going,” he said.
Brooke said the students putting themselves out there is the best part of the play for her because they don’t get many chances to do that.
“It’s like really new to me because I’m not used to doing that and you gain more confidence from that and it just makes you a better person in general,” she said.
One of the hardest parts about the play so far has been all the snow days taking away the rehearsal time for the students, and with 10 snow days already in the year, only six days of rehearsals are left; however, the students are still confident they can put on a great show.
“We try to go around the snow days, but overall I think we’re ready,” Littrell said.
Kari said another challenge was the students’ busy schedules after school with basketball, wrestling, cheerleading and other activities that practice during the rehearsal time.
“We just did small groups as much as we could,” Kari said. “We haven’t had a full cast for a while. We started [practicing] full-cast in mid-February, and then with all the snow days.”
But one good thing about the play is that it’s made of a bunch of shorter stories put into one history of dating; this also helps the kids from being overwhelmed with memorizing lines since they don’t have many lines to memorize.
The play is free admission and is open to the public.