Berkshire area high schools present fall theater productions

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Temperatures are falling but the stage curtains will soon go up for a number of local high school theater productions.

The past weekend Pittsfield High School's Proteus Theatre Group began its run of the musical "Newsies," which will continue this weekend.

Berkshire School in Sheffield staged its original dystopian student work, "The Process," devised over a 10-week rehearsal period by participating students and faculty, under the guidance of Director Jesse Howard.

A total of 10 Berkshire County-based and neighboring schools are participating in the 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare, which will run Thursday, Nov. 15 through Sunday, Nov. 18, at Shakespeare & Company in Lenox. Prior to the festival weekend, each school will also stage in-school productions of their selected Shakespearean work.

Participating Fall Festival of Shakespeare schools include: Berkshire Waldorf High School in Stockbridge, Chatham High School (N.Y.), Lee Middle and High School, Lenox Memorial Middle and High School, Monument Mountain Regional High School, Mount Everett Regional High School, Mount Greylock Regional High School, Springfield Central High School, Taconic High School, and Taconic Hills High School (N.Y.).

Here are previews for the other productions, which are open to the public. Contact the respective schools for more details or to reserve or purchase tickets.

Fall 2018 area high school productions (in alphabetical order by school)

Berkshire Waldorf High: This school will present the star-crossed tragedy, "Romeo and Juliet," directed by Annie Considine and Ellie Bartz, at 1:15 p.m. on Nov. 18, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Darrow School: Darrow Theater Workshop will present "Peter and the Starcatcher," a Tony Award-winning prequel to J.M. Barrie's classic "Peter Pan," adapted for the stage by Rick Elice and based on the bestselling children's book series by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson. This performance will take place on a minimalist set, and blends drama with comedy, 19th-century British humor with 21st-century pop culture, under the direction of Jennifer Pytleski.

Performances are free, and will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday.

Drury: Creative differences have been set aside and Drury Stage Company's production of the Broadway hit, "Sweet Charity," will go on, under the direction of Liz Urban. Two students will share the lead role of Charity Hope Valentine: Leigha DeMarsico will perform as Charity on Thursday and Saturday evening at 7 p.m., and Holly Boudreau will take on the role at 7 p.m. on Friday and at 2 p.m. on Saturday.

Tickets are available online at sweetcharitydpac.brownpapertickets.com or at the door, $5 for students, $10 for general admission.

Lee: This school will present the comedy, "As You Like It," directed by Doug Seldin and Alison Howard, at 6:15 p.m. on Nov. 16, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Lenox: This school will present the comedy, "Midsummer Night's Dream," directed by Rory Hammond and David Bertoldi, at 6:15 p.m. on Nov. 15, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Miss Hall's: The Miss Hall's School Theater Ensemble takes female empowerment to new levels with its upcoming production of "Decision Height," a dramatic story of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) of World War II, directed by Jennifer Jordan.

Tickets are $10 general admission, and performances are at 8 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. on Sunday, in the Woods Theater of the Elizabeth Gatchell Klein Arts Center on the Miss Hall's School campus in Pittsfield. Senior citizen and handicapped-accessible seating is available. Visit http://bit.ly/MHSDH or call 413-395-7108 to reserve tickets during the week, or call 413-395-7023 after 4 p.m. on Friday.

Monument Mountain: This school will also present the tragedy of "Romeo and Juliet," directed by Dana Harrison and Connie Russo, at 1:15 p.m. on Nov. 17, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Mount Greylock: This school will present the history, "Henry V," directed by Tom Jaeger and Noa Egozi, at 8:30 p.m. on Nov. 16, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Mount Everett: This school will present the romantic comedy, "Much Ado About Nothing," directed by Caitlin Kraft and Madeleine Rose Maggio, at 3:30 p.m. on Nov. 17, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Pittsfield: The Pittsfield High School Proteus Theatre Group will present its second weekend of Disney's hit musical, "Newsies," at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. on Sunday, in the Pittsfield High School Auditorium. The show is directed by PHS Theater teacher John Monteverde, with music direction by Choir Director Gaylan Palmer, and guest choreographer Olivia Martin of Cantarella Dance Studios in Pittsfield.

Tickets are $10 for students, $12 general admission, available in advance at brownpapertickets.com or at the door.

Taconic: This school will present "The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark," directed by Dara Silverman and Luke Haskell, at 6:15 p.m. on Nov. 17, during Shakespeare & Company's 30th annual Fall Festival of Shakespeare in Lenox.

Wahconah: Wahconah's Apollonian Players presents the hysterical history, "Night at the Wax Museum," at 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $9 for adults and $7 for students and seniors, available at the door.

Did we miss your upcoming high school production? Email the details to education reporter Jenn Smith at jsmith@berkshireeagle.com.

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