Many students remember painfully awkward teenage years: trying to make it out of high school alive, avoiding judgment and bullying from our peers and trying to find oneself.
In student director Lex Laas’s rendition of “The Storytelling Ability of a Boy,” audiences can relive those teenage years through the eyes of social outcasts Dora and Peck.
Throughout the show, we follow the every day lives of Dora and Peck, two best friends who are both exceedingly intelligent yet wildly strange. The show also follows their teacher Caitlin, who is trying to reach out to them while fighting her own battle and overcoming her troublesome and broken past.
Tanith Albright, freshman theatre major, plays Dora, the spunky, bold and vivacious misfit who is never afraid to speak her mind. She plays her character with aggression and passion, bringing tons of laughs. Albright beautifully portrays Dora’s darker side, consisting of her inner struggles and the wars she is fighting within herself which she refuses to verbalize.
Sophomore theatre major Trey Brake plays Peck, a clever teenage boy who seems to find the most comfort in the company of his best friend Dora. Brake portrays Peck as poetic and always seemingly lost in thought in a captivating and believable performance.
Junior theatre major Anna Drake plays Caitlin, a teacher who is desperately trying to get through to Dora and Peck. There are multiple scenes between Caitlin and the teens where she attempts heart to heart conversations with both of them, trying to figure out where their struggles stem from and how she can help them resolve them.
Drake plays the role of concerned teacher accurately depicting the conflict of trying to remain professional but being tempted to cross the line between appropriate and inappropriate teacher-student relationship.
As an ensemble, the cast works well together, feeding off each other’s dialogue and never missing a beat. Each scene flows into the next one, allowing the audience to feel as if they are simply listening in on a conversation.
The candid dialogue and realistic nature of the show pulls the audience in, leaving them wanting to know about the pasts of these vastly different characters who seem to have much in common despite their opposite personalities. Many scenes with imaginary play give the show a dream-like feel, giving the audience an look at what is going on inside the minds of these extremely complex and interesting characters.
Scenes dealing with topics such as bullying, acceptance and sexuality will both break the audience’s hearts as well as provide emotional solace to those who remember having similar experiences.
Laas proved himself to be a very talented and promising director with “Storytelling Ability of a Boy”.
Audiences will find themselves relating and sympathizing with these beautiful, tragic characters and leave the theater thinking about the ones they love and the impact those people have on their lives.