SPARTA, NJ - Lights, Camera, Action! Recently, Sparta High School has put on their first theatrical performance for the year, Stage Door. The play was directed and produced by Victoria Reed, an English and Theater teacher at Sparta High School. The play included 33 high school students ranging from grade nine to 12. The opening performance was on Thursday, Nov 20, with additional performances on Nov 21 and two shows on Nov 22; a 2 p.m. matinee and 7 p.m will be the final show.

Stage Door was written by Edna Ferber and George S. Kaufman.  It is a play about girls trying to pursue an acting career while living at the boarding home of Mrs. Orcutt. To pay the rent, many of the girls have poor jobs or are in plays that only show for a day or two.

Overall, the play was a great production that takes you back in time to the 1950s with their vintage hair, makeup and costumes.

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April Cuccinello said, “The play was really good. I liked the acting and dialogue.” 

At the house, the girls are like family, but some come and go. Linda, Louise and Jean all leave the home, with Jean becoming the most successful. She goes to Hollywood to become a motion picture actress. For entertainment, the girls often invite men over to the house to take them to a nice dinner for a decent meal. After Jean leaves for Hollywood, Terry, another girl still at the boarding home, forms a relationship with Keith Burgess, a young play writer trying to make a living. As their relationship evolves Terry becomes more invested in the relationship only to be crushed when Keith goes to Hollywood to write for big name companies.

As everyone’s life around Terry continues, Terry feels as though she is not progressing in her career after living at Mrs. Orcutt’s home for almost three years. However, she is set on not leaving her theater career behind that she deeply loves. Rejecting two offers to act in movies in Hollywood and a proposal by Keith Burgess, she is determined to make it as an actress in the theater.

David Kingsley is supportive of her decision often encourages her to not give up.  He even tries to convince big name play director, Adolph Gretzel, that Terry should have the lead in his new play rather than Jean. When Adolph does not give Terry the lead role, David Kingsley buys the play and makes Terry the lead. This breakthrough gave Terry the chance to fulfill her dreams.

Isabel Baptista who plays Bernice, said, “The play has been hard work and tiring but the performance was worth it. The performances have gone great and everyone has done a great job. It has been great working with all the cast because they’re all nice and talented actors and actresses.” She also plans on continuing with future high school plays.

Not only did the actors and actresses rate their performance as high, audience members from Sparta High School, Sarah Ramos thought the “acting was great.”