Love Song’s simplicity succeeds at METG competition


Mahi Kandage

Love Song, this year's WATA submission for METG Festival

Mahi Kandage, Sports Editor

Each year, Westford Academy Theater Arts presents a new, under forty minute play to submit to the Massachusetts Educational Theater Guild festival competition. The cast and crew this year presented Love Song, by John Kolvenbach. The short play with its comedic elements is a sharp contrast from some of the recent WATA plays, such as Spring Awakening.

Love Song advanced from the METG Preliminary Competition on March 3, and the cast and crew will compete against other high schools on Saturday March 10.

The four-person cast, directed by Michael Towers, stars junior Dan Wilson, playing the role of Beane. His sister in the play, Joan, is portrayed by senior Devon Whitney. Senior Vishal Raghunath takes the role of Joan’s husband, Harry, while Beane’s mystery love is played by sophomore Caroline Burke.

The play opens with a simple, but poignant set in the shape of an enormous cardboard box, with FRAGILE written across the front in bright, red, uniform letters.

As the play begins, the box is opened by the large group of set manipulators to reveal a home setting made entirely out of cardboard.

Standing out amongst the simple cardboard is an exquisite carved design, as tall as the actors. Junior Alyssa Ramoutar’s creation brings a new level of detail and craftsmanship to the simplistic, unique set.

We are introduced to three of the four characters early on: Joan, Beane, and Harry. Joan and her husband Harry play parents to the socially awkward Beane, who is stuck in a box of his own.

“He kind of showed us how to love again,” said Raghunath, describing the relationship between Harry and his wife.

Beane’s loneliness and social anxiety is a focal point in the play; it causes conflict between all of the characters.

“He’s so alone that he has to create somebody to love,” said Wilson. “He wants to feel another person, he wants to be around people.”

Burke’s character, Molly, is brought in as a creation that Beane has created in his head, bringing him happiness and giving him incentive to try and live his life.

“Molly didn’t only help Beane escape his own box, but Beane kind of helped her,” said Burke. “She was able to learn how to love and to experience that with another person.”

The crew works perfectly alongside the cast in order to create the mood and setting.

The simple costumes, designed by senior Maya Kapur, and junior Ava Scully perfectly captured the simple, honest feel of the story, while the sound and lighting technicians used their technology and skills to enhance each scene with effects and foreshadowing to show the simple theme:

“Just live your life, and love it,” said Burke.