Weston High School has long been home to an array of aspiring young actors, dancers, and singers -- specifically, members of the student club, WHS Company (www.whscompany.com). Since the 1980s, the group has wowed audiences with both classic and contemporary shows; Emmanuel Church seeks once again, to showcase their talent. “Center Stage” will feature a 30-minute classical music set from the Fontenay Chamber Players, followed by a preview of WHS Company’s fall production, Arthur Miller’s All My Sons. The event takes place on Sunday, October 22, from 4:00 - 5:30 pm at Emmanuel Church, 285 Lyons Plain Road, Weston. Admission is free, “Center Stage” is family-friendly and will include both door prizes and a bake sale.
The afternoon will kick off with an eclectic array of music from the Fontenay to include pieces by Mozart, Debussy and Scott Joplin. The Fontenay was formed in 2003 and is the Ensemble in Residence at The Bartlett Arboretum in Stamford, CT. The group is named for a French town with a connection to the composer Ravel, whose luminous Introduction and Allegro is their inspiration. The ensemble highlights three Principal Players from The Greater Bridgeport Symphony and is comprised of: Concertmaster Deborah Wong, Principal Flutist Keith, Principal Harpist Wendy Kerner, Violinist Wei Tang, Violist Leslie Tomkins and Cellist Rob LaRue.
In part two of “Center Stage,” Company will share play excerpts, giving attendees a glimpse of their upcoming drama, All My Sons, directed by Nancy Ponturo and co-produced by Paul A. Levin, Lauren Rosenberg and Patricia Perez Goodrich. The All My Sons cast includes: Remy Young (Sue Baylis), Jane Burdett (Kate Keller), Ellen Relac (Ann Deever), Lucas Casellas (Bert), Thomas Valenti (Joe Keller), Ben Rosenberg (Jim Bayliss), Jack Hurst (George Deever), David Katz (Chris Keller), Momo Burns-Min (Lydia Lubey) and Matthew Figliola (Frank Lubey).
All My Sons is a 1947 play based on the true story of Joe Keller and Herbert Deever, partners at a shop which produced defective airplane parts during WWII, resulting in the deaths of 21 pilots. Deever was jailed, while Keller remained free, profited, and lived comfortably with his wife, Kate, though their son, Larry, went missing in WWII. Offspring Chris Keller and Ann Deever (Larry’s former girlfriend) have an affair, Herbert’s son, George, returns from the war bitter to find his father in prison but his partner free, and the circumstances surrounding Larry’s death, all add to the play’s intensity.
“WHS Company is both thrilled to be recognized by the community and grateful to Emmanuel Church for hosting a preview of All My Sons at ‘Center Stage.’ We’re also thankful for the opportunity to celebrate our cast, while promoting the arts at large in Weston and beyond,” said Liz Morris, WHS Company Advisor.
Full performances of All My Sons will take place at Weston High School othe weekend of November 10-12 (7:30 pm, 3:00 pm Sunday matinee). Tickets will go on sale shortly ($15 adults; $10 students/seniors) via www.whscompany.com or can be purchased at the door.
WHS Company is a student-run theater organization founded in 1984, and the high school’s largest club. Company traditionally presents four productions per year; a drama, muscial, one acts (student-directed) and dialogue (student-written and directed works).
“Emmanuel Church has been delighted to be the venue for WHS Company to showcase scenes from their spring musicals, and are now honored to have them expand their presence with us to include a preview of their fall drama. To enrich the afternoon, we have invited the outstanding Fontenay Chamber Players to begin the program. Come and enjoy,” said John Boys, Emmanuel Church Music Coordinator.
Photo Credit: Ellen Relac