Monday, March 26, 2007

Who were the thespians?

Here's a group I'd forgotten about--the Thespians. According to our Freshman yearbook (1953-54) it was the school dramatic club and one became a member by trying out. I would rather have my fingernails pulled than perform or try out, so I probably never even considered this fine group and the advantages of learning to speak in front of a group. That year they gave 2 one-act plays for the public and 3 for the student body. I'm impressed! Plus they had an initiation banquet in October and attended a play as a group in May. Three members of our class were in Thespians that year--Sara Y., Mike B., and Neal J. John Ross, the English and Journalism teacher, was the adviser.

The next year's annual shows no calendar of the club's activities, but it does say they presented a short play for an assembly program, introduced the assembly programs, and attended one stage play. Our class membership expanded a bit and Carolyn M., Kay A., Sally O. were added, so our class had six. Richard Myers was the adviser (he played the organ at our wedding).

The theme of the next annual (1955-56) was a playbill using terms like directors, producers, playwrights, stars, understudies, etc., but I can't find the Thespian Club, and instead there is a small group (6) in their first year of organizing as Forensics. Neal J., and Carolyn M. were members. It picked up a number of underclassmen the next year, and for our senior year included Nancy L. and Carolyn M., but Neal J. had left us and gone to college early. Mrs. Price was the Forensics Club adviser. In 1956-57 the group presented three plays at school assemblies.

Does anyone remember the story on the name change? I see there were a number of student skits which seem to be ad hoc--not members of these groups--in our senior year a skit on proper attire (Darlene H., Sharon R., Nancy L.), a skit on courtesy, and a Christmas play that included Carolyn M., Ron D., Dwayne Z. and Duane B.

I've got some photos of the senior class play--not from the annual. Coming soon. . . The Red House Mystery.

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