MILLBURN, NJ - Last Sunday, as Millburn High School veteran Anne Hathaway clenched her Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, current members of the Limelight Players (the High School’s Performing Arts group, which Hathaway was also a part of) readied themselves for two major performances of their spring drama, George Kaufman and Moss Hart’s You Can’t Take It With You.
To be performed this weekend, the Pulitzer-prize winning play enacts the story of an American family in the 1930s that deals with problems of love, society, and age, with a quaint sense of humor that is sure to elicit laughs from the audience. Through this process, they ultimately explore a deeper question: How can life be best spent?
Such a meaningful play undoubtedly requires a talented and dedicated cast to explore its theme, and here the Limelight players excel.
“My first play has been both a crazy and fun experience for me. Everyone in this cast is so nice, helpful, funny, and talented. We all worked hard and diligently together to get this performance ready. Though it was not all smooth sailing, everything worked out in the end,” said Freshman Jake Gluckman, who plays the part of Tony Kirby.
Along with Jake, the cast includes seniors Rachel Ben-Menachem (Essie Carmichael), Jordana Graifman (Rheba), Christopher McHugh (Ed Carmichael), Max Sauberman (Grandpa), Rebecca Van Voorhees (Penny Sycamore), and Ally Weissenberg (Miriam Kirby); juniors Alec Gevarter (Paul Sycamore), Eleanor Konrad (Alice Sycamore), Nicole LaChance (Grand Duchess Olga Katrina), Aanchal Sahay (Government Agent Jane), Andrew Singer (Anthony Kirby, Sr.) and Charles Zhang (Henderson); sophomores Jillian Berkowitz (Gay Wellington), Lucy Grebin (Government Agent Mal), Leonard Santos (The Man), and Alec Wolf (Donald), and freshman Alex Maron (Mr. DePinna).
While these actors make the characters come alive, there are also numerous challenges backstage that must be met by the crew, which consists of seniors Daniel Miller, Jonas Singer and Nils Sohn; juniors Dani Hilzenrath, Andrew Fitzpatrick, Hannah Geller, Karin Augustin, Natasha Baskin, Devika Kanagaraj and Vera Korenman; and sophomores Polina Pomytkin, Michael Bialer, Andrew Kiselik, Kunal Palawat, and Pearce Ropion.
While the many names make the show seem like an overly large group, the closeness of the Players could not be emphasized more by the cast and crew. Sophomore Leonard Santos, who is participating in his first Limelight play, said, “We are all pretty much family after this fantastic experience.” He may be experiencing what Senior Max Sauberman, who holds the lead role of Grandpa, says is typical of Limelight shows.
“This is my eighth Limelight production, and with every production comes a new family. I've been so blessed to have had the opportunity to become so close to such amazing performers and incredible people,” he said. " The message really resonates with all of us - we can't spend our lives dwelling over our means to an elusive unattainable end, and should instead find enjoyment in every day. I've enjoyed each rehearsal and every moment of being in the Limelight Players, and I think our cast has done a great job interpreting this classic American drama.”
“You Can’t Take It With You” will be performed Friday, March 1st 2013 and Saturday, March 2nd 2013 at 7:30 PM in the Millburn High School auditorium. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. The production is directed by Paul Weinstein and produced by Arvin Arjona.