East Ridge spring play opens May 3East Ridge High School's spring play, "You Can't Take It With You," will open May 3 on the Loft Stage.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
“You Can’t Take it With You,” written by Moss Hart and George S. Kaufman, is about the eccentric Sycamore family and the adventures they find themselves in.
The Sycamores include a fireworks salesman, a writer, a wannabe dancer and a xylophone player.
“The characters are over the top in an honest way,” play director Marcie Berglund said. “We have a very broad spectrum of characters.”
However, Alice Sycamore, who is the only relatively normal one in her family, falls in love with her boss’s son and they wish to marry. Things go terribly awry when the two lovebirds decide to introduce their families to each other.
“It’s just got a bunch of craziness going on all the time,” Berglund said.
Berglund said she decided on “You Can’t Take it With You” because it is a classic show, released in 1936, that has a lot of humor in it.
“The musical this year was one that not many people know so we wanted to do a play that people know,” Berglund said. “So we chose a classic. Since it’s a classic, you can’t even improve upon it – it’s already perfect.”
However, Berglund did take one liberty with the show by making the Sycamores collectors.
“We’re making this family borderline hoarders,” she said.
Berglund said she decided to make the family hoarders because of the popularity of the contemporary reality television show “Hoarders.”
“That was the one contemporary piece I could add,” she said.
To give the illusion of “collectors,” the stage will be filled with newspapers, magazines, paintings, masks and swords.
“It’s been fun coming up with all the interesting pieces to fill this huge stage,” Berglund said.
Berglund said her favorite aspect of “You Can’t Take it With You” is the dialogue in the show.
“It’s not a farce, where that’s more physically funny,” she said, “this is dialogue funny.”
Berglund said “You Can’t Take it With You” has posed some unique challenges to her actors since a common element in the show is the use of props.
“It’s been challenging to have them deal with the fact that they are doing things while they’re acting,” she said. “I’m teaching the kids the extra business involved besides just saying their lines.”
Berglund, who has been teaching her actors comedic timing, said she is optimistic about the success of the show.
“I’m excited for the audiences to see what a wonderful classic piece this is – you don’t need to change it,” she said. “You don’t need to adapt to today’s world, it’s still hilariously funny.”
East Ridge High School’s production of “You Can’t Take it With You” runs May 3-5 at 7 p.m. at the Loft Stage. Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for students and seniors. All performances are general admission. Tickets can be purchased online, www.theloftstage.com or by calling the box office at 651-768-2334. Save $1 with advance purchase.