All work with lots of play


Claire Paul

Shannon Gray (right) and Chesley Bond (left) are preparing for the show.

By Michael Wright, Staff Writer

The students and faculty of Chaminade’s Performing Arts Department will present five more showings of their newest play “Crimes of the Heart” for audience. After the show the audience was treated to cake with the cast and production crew. The show will continue this week from Wednesday to Saturday (7: 30 p.m.) and Sunday (3:00 p.m.) at the Loo Theatre.

The story revolves around a southern family of sisters who lead dysfunctional lives and deal with a multitude of trials throughout the course of a brief visit with one another.

The preparation time leading up to the play involved months of long hours for the cast and the production crew. More than a dozen members of the crew had to be engaged in setting up the props and other necessities for the play to be a success.

Claire Paul (also a staff writer at the Silversword) is one of the members of the crew that performed multiple roles in the preparation of the event. She helped to develop the set, while also learning her role as one of the leading actresses for the role of the disgruntled southern belle Lenny Magrath.

One of the biggest difficulties for Paul was time. She emphasized that each part of the play demanded a plethora of late night hours in order to make a successful production.

“I would be painting here until like 2:30 in the morning,” she said. “I would come about three of four times a week. I would come in on weekends some times.”

Paul is an experienced actress who has performed multiple plays throughout her high school and college years.  In addition, fellow cast members Shannon Gray (Babe Botrelle), Ashleigh Taylor (Meg Magrath), and Ernesto Olmos (Doc Porter) have also performed in multiple plays in the past. Cast members Chesley Bond (Barnette Lloyd) and Jacqueline McGreal (Chick Boyle) are participating in a show for the first time.

Because of past performing experiences, Paul understands the amount of time it takes to learn each character role.

“We’ve been rehearsing since… I wanna say maybe the middle to the last part of August,” Paul expressed. “ We would first start by doing read-throughs. We read it twice with everyone, and then we would start by doing scene-by-scene.”

Paul doesn’t really mind the preparations for the event. She has even insisted that some of these troubles are what makes the experience entertaining and beneficial for her.

“Memorizing lines… I think it helps a lot with school and it culturizes you because you learn to memorize things for tests better,” she said. “ I memorized like the whole show. It’s in a book so memorized like a whole book, which I think is an accomplishment.”

The turnout for the opening night last Friday of the show was a full house. Only a few of the roughly 30 seats were still open by the time everyone in the audience had gotten situated.

The audience was laughing at many of the jokes that the performers had used in the play. With scenes of women gossiping to physical encounters, the amount of comedy and tragedy was on par with each other and demonstrated the qualities of the Southern Gothic genre.

Gray had played the role of Babe Botrelle, sister of Lenny. Babe had attempted to hang herself because of the troubles in the story. She miserably fails because the rope was too weak to support her body weight, so she becomes furious.