FREEPORT – Freeport High School play director Tim Ryan is proud of the fact that the school creates its own plays for the Maine Drama Festival.

And while the state competition won’t begin until March 8, the public soon can see for themselves what Ryan and the students are producing. Show dates for student-written “UnHappily Ever After” and “Murphy’s Law” are Feb. 27, 28 and March 1, at 6:30 p.m., at the Freeport Performing Arts Center. “Murphy’s Law” begins the evening, with intermission followed by “UnHappily Ever After.” Admission is $7 for adults, $5 for students and seniors, and Regional School Unit 5 employees get in free.

“We are one of the only two (sometimes three) out of 79 high schools in the state that produce and enter student-written plays into the Maine Principals’ Association one-act drama festival,” Ryan said. “We’ve been doing it for about 10 years now so it is a big tradition in not only the town of Freeport, but since school consolidation the entire RSU5, as well.

“We were the first school that had a student-written Maine play go to the New England Drama Festival in 2008. Since then our goal is to be the first school to win a Maine State Championship at the festivals with a student-written play,” he said.

Seniors Kelsey Grant and Molly Brown co-wrote “UnHappily Ever After.”

“It is a drama that is a reboot/sequel to ‘Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs,’” Ryan said. “The show has a cast and crew numbering over 50 students.”

Grant said she likes seeing her work “come to life” when the play hits the stage.

“It is such a wonderful feeling seeing the cast make mine and Molly’s ideas become a reality,” Grant said. “I came up with this play originally in my creative writing class. I had no idea it would’ve turned out to be something so much larger than a two-page essay.”

Grant said that, in general, she loves to watch actors she knows do their thing in plays.

“I see people I know so well act very different and see their transformation into their character,” she said.

Senior Beka Martin wrote “Murphy’s Law” for the Young Maine Playwright’s Festival, which Freeport High is hosting on Saturday, April 5. It is a play about a young man’s bad day that continuously gets worse.

Daniel Sinclair, a junior who will be graduating early, is co-directing “Murphy’s Law” and plays the lead, Charlie Murphy. Sinclair also is playing the Magic Mirror in “UnHappily Ever After.”

Junior Sarah Watts is the lead actress in “UnHappily Ever After,” playing the Queen. Senior Ethan Whited is the lead actor, playing King Charming.

Ryan’s cast and crew are traveling to Rockland for this year’s drama festival regional competition at Oceanside High School, on March 8.

“My cast and everyone involved are extremely excited to put this show on for the public, and then take it to competition in March 8,” Ryan said. “We are up against some very stiff competition this year like multi-state champion Lincoln Academy. We also need to raise money to make the overnight trip happen. It costs like $500 just for the rental truck alone.”


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