The Menlo drama program has recently undergone an extremely ambitious task: have actors draft their own scripts and mesh them all together to create Wedding of the Year, this fall’s drama production. The actors work around the story line of Tony n’ Tina’s Wedding, but they the creative liberty to write their own scripts and bring their own humor to the production. Junior Claire Chen speaks incredibly favorably of this style and explains, “during rehearsal, we do lots of improvised scenes and from those improvs, we choose bits and pieces and string them together to form scenes.” Because fellow students are the writers, we can expect plenty of witty and relatable jokes from this production.
While the scripts will be set in place by opening night, one situation that can’t be forseen is the audience participation. Each member of the audience will essentially be playing a role as well: a guest at the wedding. The cast remains silent on exactly how the audience will be participating, but we are sure to experience some crazy situations.
Part of what’s so intriguing about this play is the fact that it will utilize the new arts center as a backdrop for the wedding reception. As Chen describes, “it is really the first opportunity (besides the arts opening) to showcase the arts center,” meaning that it’s up to the actors to utilize their space really well in order to make a powerful impression. Chen goes on to state that “even though the arts center is a beautiful building, it wasn’t designed to be a theatre, which sometimes makes it difficult to stage a production in it.” Even though the space may be more of an obstacle than an advantage to the cast, the change in scenery from the flo mo will definitely be something to look forward to as an audience member.
In addition to all of these reasons to see the fall production, there will also be a dinner served during the production which will add a unique element to the production and should make for a fun experience as an audience member. If you aren’t convinced you should see the play now, perhaps you will be after you learn that there are plenty of dance numbers written in the script, one of which is to Gangnam Style.
Wedding of the Year opens November 16th and has two shows on November 17th as well. I expect to see everyone there.