Seniors present production of 24 Hours-AM


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The poster of 24 Hours-AM.

Grace Hsu, Staff Writer

The Black Box production of 24 Hours-AM will be performed on Feb. 7, 8, and 9 at 7 p.m. and on Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. in Room 109. Directed by seniors TJ Bonica, Audrey Masterson, and Colby Murphy, the play is a dramedy, a combination of a drama and comedy, collection of twelve scenes that features a cast and crew of underclassmen from WA’s theater arts program.

24 Hours-AM is written by Oliver Hailey and The Writers Workshop and each scene is set at the beginning of a new hour, starting at 1 a.m. and ending at 12 p.m. The scenes do not correlate with each other, and each scene has a new story; a married couple fighting, a relationship budding, and a plane ride are just a few of the scenes. 

“The only common theme across all the scenes is the mention of time and the relevance of time,” Bonica said.

The play is 90 minutes long with an intermission, with the first six hours, or scenes set in the first half while the second set of hours is in the second half. Each scene has its own kind of genre, but overall, the play is a dramedy, where most of the scenes have elements of both drama and comedy. Some are heavier, but comedy-heavy scenes let the audience breathe and laugh before darker scenes. 

“You’ll have fun, you’ll laugh, maybe cry. But also, in every scene, there’s at least one character that everyone can relate to,” Bonica said. “And [the audience] can find themselves in [the characters] and be represented.”

Each director directed four scenes and all of the actors worked with each director at least once, which meant that they got to learn different directing styles and various ways to communicate with different actors.  The cast is made up of six actors and they are split across all the scenes as well.  Almost all of the scenes have a pair of actors, besides two scenes that have one and three. Each actor plays at least four different roles and has learned to differentiate each of them. The actors get to work with different actors in each scene as well because every scene but one has a new pairing.

“They do a great job of differentiating each role. Some of them are playing a mother, a child, a friend, and a husband or a wife,” Bonica said. “It’s cool to see a difference between each of those.”

The set stays the same throughout the play. On stage, there will be a bedroom set up and a kitchen in front of it. However, some furniture in a scene is used differently in another to create a new atmosphere, such as three kitchen chairs becoming a park bench. The technicians use sound cues and lighting to establish new places, like the sound of birds chirping, and green and blue lighting for the park. 

“[I chose this play] because I thought it was super unique. It’s really interesting and intriguing how these scenes don’t correlate with one another and they’re all living their own separate lives but we could connect it in some way like we have the same set throughout the whole thing,” Masterson said. “So it’s like maybe they live in the same house, maybe we’re using all of the same furniture but [there’s] different people in different situations. It was an interesting challenge to go through the play and find out how these worlds collide with each other.”

The cast and crew have worked on the show since the beginning of December, rehearsing every day after school for three hours. Another challenge for them has been getting enough rehearsal time with the recent amount of snow days.

“During the snow days, we got a little scared. It just took rehearsals off of us and we kept not having rehearsals. But luckily all of the actors were prepared for the next day to come in and really work,” Murphy said.

Bonica, Masterson, and Murphy are extremely proud of the cast and crew. According to Murphy, every person in the company grew significantly as an artist and person throughout the rehearsal process. The directors highlighted stage manager Aubrie Rose and assistant director Andrew Meija for taking on leadership roles as sophomores. 

“They’ve done great taking charge and taking the lead of the black box when they need to and commanding the space,” Masterson said.

Due to the small company size and copious amount of rehearsal time, the cast, crew, and directors have bonded. They filmed vlogs to document the experience, kept an emotional support stuffed animal, and had dance parties. When issues came up, the kids put their brains together and came up with a solution, which they called the “collaboration station.” 

“We’ve definitely become a lot closer over the past few months. I hadn’t really talked to most people in this production before, but now I see them every day after school and they’re some of the best people I know,” freshman cast member Elyse Holmes said.

The directors hope that the show will inspire others to not only join theater but also follow their dreams. They hope that the show will show people that they can do anything they want to do, as long as they put their mind to it. 

“The show is immersive, inspiring, and heartfelt. The audience will experience a span of emotions and a lot of unusual situations. It brings the audience through a lot. It’s a great play,” Masterson said.