Video: Theater program to perform new play with help from soccer team
October 2, 2017
If you weren’t paying attention to the morning announcements during the week of Sept. 18, then you would not have heard that an all-girls cast will be performing an award-winning play at Westside. “The Wolves” premiered at Vassar College and did well off-Broadway in New York and was just released for rights last year, meaning that anyone could perform the play as long as they paid for the rights to it.
According to Jeremy Stoll, theatre director and teacher at Westside, “The Wolves” is a play about a girls soccer team. There are six major scenes that consist of the warm-up, drills and conversation before a game. The story follows them through the course of the season.
Delaney Wetjen, sophomore,auditioned for the play. “I think that the thing with the the all-female cast was really cool because you don’t see that a lot in theatre,” Wetjen said.
With nine girls cast in the team, there is only one adult character.
“The only adult character in the play is a parent,” Stoll said. “She’s listed in the script as ‘soccer mom,’ [and] she has a two-and-a-half-page monologue,” said Stoll. “When you think about a play about a girls soccer team, you wouldn’t think of it as emotionally impactful, but [it] is.”
For the cast, Stoll wants a mixture of girls with a soccer background and girls with a theater background.
“Because it is so true to life, a lot of girls won’t even feel like they’re acting.” Stoll said. “They’ll talk the way that they talk, and say the lines that they’re given.”
Wetjen played soccer a long time ago, but isn’t worried about a lack of experience. “It’s okay because they help you learn how to dribble,” she said.
Freshman Mia Stiles thinks having a soccer background might help with the part of the audition where they have to showcase simple soccer skills, such as passing.
“I do think being on a team of some sort would be helpful towards the show, because of the fact it’s about a team and how they act as one,” Stiles said.
According to Stoll, “[it’s a] slice of life story. We had a few of our students read it [in 2014], and everyone was like. ‘it’s exactly how we talk, it’s exactly what we talk about’.” Senior Alexis Rose finds the script extremely relatable. “As I read through the script, it sounded like a normal conversation that I’m having with my friends. The language is all very familiar to me and it is the way I communicate in my everyday life.”
On the topic of how the script relates to the audience, Stiles said she agrees with Rose. “Each character has their own personality, so it’s difficult to relate to [every part of the] script. I can however relate to how some of the characters behave by the things they say or do, and also by their personality type.”
Rose is doing a little more to prepare for her auditions. “I’m trying my best to portray these characters in a way that seems natural to the audience and to other teenagers. I also will be practicing basic soccer skills so it would look more authentic, rather than someone who hasn’t played soccer in 13 years,” Rose said.
Though an aggressive, victory-motivated soccer team may come to mind, “The Wolves” shows a deeper, more personal side to being on a team. The production is a collaboration between Warrior Theatre and the University of Nebraska at Omaha and will be performed Nov. 17 and 18 at Westside Middle School.