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Galax High School students have worked since August 2011 to cut full-length plays, to research a variety of details and to rehearse two very mature plays that will be performed in tandem four times this month as “The Dark Side.”
The students have learned to quote everything from Greek passages of “Oedipus Rex” to the lyrics of The Who’s “My Generation.”
Performances will include “Cell” by Judy Klass and “The Woodsman” by Steven Fetcher. This production touches life’s difficult realities with heart and honesty.
“These young actors embrace the roles with depth that I seldom see as a director,” says B.J. Carroll, GHS drama teacher and director of the production. “The candor of their performances is amazing.”
“Cell” is the story of a young college professor who must take care of his drug-addicted, amputee older brother. Showcasing the extraordinary acting talents of Tyler Mathews (Dennis) and Derek Rose (Michael), the play is a powerhouse of sibling rivalry and intellectual competition.
The ensemble is completed with the strong performances of Christine McLennan as Lieutenant Rodriguez, Jensyn Stoots as Edith the day nurse, Haley Isaacs as girlfriend Julie and Karan Kumar as Byron Carson.
“The Woodsman” takes a profound look at a man’s ruined life and explores the disturbing world of child abuse.
Tyler Mathews takes up the enormously challenging lead role of Walter, who is haunted by the apparition of a young girl. Dunikqua Gambill (as new girlfriend Nikki) tries to help Walter find normalcy in his life.
Mathews is supported by Antonio Martinez as Carlos (the loyal brother-in-law), Derek Rose as Sergeant Lucas (his nemesis), Kaitlyn Martin as Robin (the young bird-watcher) and Eli Walker as Rosen (Walter’s therapist).
• Performances of “The Dark Side” are on May 19 and 26 at 8 p.m.; and on May 20 and May 27 at 3 p.m.
in the GHS auditorium. Admission will be a donation to support the Performing Arts Department.