by Eric Oberman
The Theatre Department welcomes the community to spend the weekend of Nov. 15-17 in Paris for the comedy A Little Hotel on the Side.
The play is about the comic situations in which the guests and employees of a Parisian hotel in the late nineteenth century find themselves.
The production features seniors Matt Lynn as Benoit Pinglet, a guest of the hotel, Michaela Tropeano as Angelique, his wife, and Nicole Zimmermann as Marcelle Paillardin, Benoit’s mistress and the wife of his best friend.
Said Drama Teacher Mr. Daniel Devlin, the show’s director: “I think it’s going to be an amazing production. There’s so much talent in the show, it will be really cool to see them be successful with something that…they think they aren’t going to be successful with.”The play starts at 4 p.m. on Nov. 15, and 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 16 and 17. Tickets cost $10 and will be available at the door and in the lobby after school during the week before the show.Said Fine Arts Teacher Mr. Roy Chambers, who designed the set: “Normally [the set design crew] would be starting on stage in September... adding on piece by piece directly on stage. But, this year, we’ve had to work in the choir room, in the stage shop, in the foyer, any place we could find room.”According to senior Geoffrey Ko, who plays Henri Paillardin, the husband of Benoit’s mistress, one of the difficulties that the show has faced is a lack of rehearsal space due to an ongoing construction project that ended Oct. 22. Said Oquendo: “During the months I work on the production, the show is my best friend…. I know everything and anything there is to know about it.”Senior Lydia Oquendo will serve as stage manager for the show. She has been working with two assistant stage managers, junior Samantha Gruskin and sophomore Stephen Bubniak, to make sure that all technical aspects of the production run smoothly.Frank Guerriero, one of two freshmen in the show, said: “It’s cool to see [actors] that I saw doing the very intense stuff [in previous shows] doing the very lighthearted, goofy stuff…. It puts their personalities in a different light.”Said senior Maggie Tanji, who plays the role of Penelope: “There’s been a huge adjustment to doing a farce like Hotel. One of our biggest challenges as a cast has been getting the right physicality, both for the time period…and for comedy in general.”Hotel differs from previous WHS productions in that it is a farce. According to Lynn, this means the characters are exaggerated versions of character archetypes, such as the sexy French maid and the nagging. “It’s really a challenge, but I know in the end it’s going to be so, so funny. That’s what I’m looking forward to: the result of all that hard work.”