San Marino High School’s Alice


Arwen Wen, Staff Member

“The Athenians revered theatre as the moral compass of their democracy. As part of their civic duty, every citizen was mandated to attend the theatrical festivals so they could feel, and question and learn together.” (Blake Williams’ Director’s Note). On Thursday, October 22nd, I had the pleasure of watching the final dress rehearsal of the new Zoom Advanced Drama production of Alice. It premiered at 7 PM on Friday, October 23rd, and closed the following night. In my opinion, the production was a huge success. Not only was the acting and the overall production value amazing, there were more than 120 computers signed on each night, and the show was viewed internationally from Australia to France, as well as across the United States.  

This year, due to the quarantine, the only way to do productions is either on Zoom or to make videos. “It was important to me to do the show live, it is a theatre class, not film school, the students need the live environment and the unpredictability of a live environment,” Williams said. Zoom may have added visibility, but it also added its own share of problems. Both the Advanced Drama class and the Stage Management class spend weeks just working out Zoom kinks and learning how to act in front of a tiny camera.

The San Marino student cast consisted of Melika Morshed (Cheshire Cat), Rae Bear (Alice), Darian Torrell (the White Rabbit), Thayer Talt (The Queen of Hearts), Will Ford (The King of Hearts), Siouxsie Lennox (the Chrysanthemum), Ella Graham (the Daisy), Maddy McClam (the Poppy), Mia Rios (the Lily), Nash Wong (the Violet), Zoë Mendoza (the Dodo), Charlie Sutherland (Caterpillar), Sonia Deshaies (the Duchess), Heidi Doerges (Tweedle Dee), Maddy Brousseau (Tweedle Dum), Ali Rubin (the Mad Hatter), Georgie Eittinger (the March Hare), Luke Duncan (the Dormouse), and Peyton Talt (the White Queen). With the help of others, the entire production was written and directed by Ms. Williams.

The show isn’t held up only by the talented actors of SMHS, but by an amazing support team, consisting of other students, as well as alumni, and professionals. Williams stated that she could not have pulled off such a production without the help of her alumni stage crew and other support staff. “Performing in this show was amazing as it brought back a small sense of normalcy from before this pandemic,” Graham said. This sense was shared across the other actors, however abnormal it was. “We spent three weeks adapting the old script that was about 70 pages long into a new Zoom one. The play runs about an hour twenty and in retrospect, I probably should have cut about 15 more minutes,” Williams said of Alice, comparing to the last time the play was put on by SMHS drama.

I can’t wait to see what’s next for SMHS DRAMA. If you missed the show a link is up on the high school’s web page under the Drama section. Also, the link is included below: