Blue Ghost haunts Spartan Stage

If there’s one thing everybody loves to hate, it’s a cliffhanger. In the 1940s, short films called cliffhanger serials would play before actual films, always ending with the hero in some perilous situation to draw moviegoers back for the next installment. Theatre teacher Brandon Lawrence drew inspiration from these agitating endings for the White Station fall play, entitled Cliffhanger: Beware the Blue Ghost.

What started as a 30-minute play for an Alaskan summer camp Lawrence worked on back in 2011 has now become a two-act play filled with action, comedy and yes, lots of cliffhangers.

“I think it’s a fun adventure that we kind of need right now. We need to remember those days when… these serials were there to make you feel better,” Lawrence said. “They were adventures where the good guys were good, the bad guys were bad, and you knew what was what.”

While Lawrence had some reservations about selecting a show he had written, the choice has given the actors more creative license when it comes to their execution.

“I think you have more ability to play around with it, especially since it’s a new script. When you personally know the director who wrote the script, they’re open to more ideas,” freshman Robyn Dixon, who will have her debut high school performance in this show, said.

Another object of concern was Lawrence’s ideas getting lost in translation from the script to the stage, but sophomore Blake Shirley assures that the directing has been spot on.

“He knows his vision,” Shirley said. “He knows exactly what he wants, knows exactly what he’s doing. He knows this script in and out.”

Emlyn Polatty
Henchmen of masked villain the Crimson Skull take young wards Mary and Diana, played by freshmen Robyn Dixon and Chloe Littlejohn, hostage. Cliffhanger: Beware the Blue Ghost has been rehearsed since early fall and will hit the stage November 21-23.