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Granite Bay Today

The Student News Site of Granite Bay High School

Granite Bay Today

The Student News Site of Granite Bay High School

Granite Bay Today

Taking the stage (“Othello” BTS)

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Picture courtesy of Granite Bay theatre

Warning: this story contains spoilers about the upcoming “Othello” play presented by Granite Bay theater. 

The GBHS theater has been preparing for the play of “Othello”  since the summer. The class went on a trip all the way to London to further their knowledge and fully understand the story behind the Shakespearean play.

The Granite Bay theater put their own spin on the original 1570 version of Othello and instead placed it in the Civil War era. Due to this change they switched some of the Italian cities, in Shakespeare’s version, to match the new scene setting.

The play follows the lead role, Othello, who is a general that falls in love with the daughter of a senator, played by Madison Timone. 

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“My favorite scene is definitely the last one. It’s the murder of my wife, and it’s basically where I choke her out with my handkerchief. I would say that it is my favorite scene because of all the tension that comes with the scene,” senior Gerrard Ediagbonya, who plays the lead role of Othello, said.

It takes the actors longer to memorize their lines for Shakespeare because the language is a lot more difficult to understand than the previous plays they have performed, such as “Shrek”. 

“Iago has the second most lines out of all of (the characters). It’s a lot and the character holds so much depth and kind of emotional variability throughout the play that it’s very difficult to get that range,” junior Gabe Frank, who plays the role of Iago, said. 

There is much more movement in the modernized version of Othello. The students had to learn new blocking to match the Civil War setting. With the added movement to the original play, the scenes were transformed into something different that the students love even more.

For Lillie Koch, Othello’s movement director, watching the play come together after all her efforts has been a big deal. Her favorite scene to choreograph was the party scene.

“It’s a really good incorporation of dance with the girls but it also has some funny moments of the boys being drunk,” Koch said.

In London the students viewed other Shakespeare plays. One of the main things that stood out for one of the students, Frank, was seeing “ A Midsummer’s Night Dream” at The Globe, one of Shakespeare’s original stages. 

“It was a cool different perspective because you can see the stage that Shakespeare was writing for,” Frank said. 

Thirteen students led by Zachary Magan, the drama teacher, went to the Globe to take a Shakespearean practice workshop and the University of Exeter for workshops on movement, vocal performance, and contact improv which enhances the theme of the text in a given moment through movement.

“The greatest challenge is probably interpreting everything we learned from London and movement wise into the show,” Koch said.

It has been a lengthy process to produce the end results due to the incorporation of information that students gained while they were in London.

“Most days we go until 5pm after school then once or twice a week we go till 8 pm, so probably like 10 hours a week,” junior Noah Ellison, stage manager, said.

The theater crew has dedicated many hours to making “Othello” a success. The theater has a total of six shows with opening day being on Oct. 26, 2023.

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About the Contributors
Anna Hufford, Staff Writer
Anna is a junior. This is her second year on the Gazette staff.
Lola Engel, Staff Writer
Lola is a Senior. This is her second year on the Gazette staff.

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