Wakefield presents “Anne of Green Gables”
This year, Wakefield High School is performing two musicals: Anne of Green Gables and Emma! A Pop Musical. Based on the book, Anne of Green Gables follows a young orphan girl named Anne who has to fight for a spot in the family that accidentally adopted her. The cast and crew are excited to be putting this show on at the high school.
Wakefield High School started off their theater season in the fall with the classic Christmas movie-turned-play, A Miracle on 34th Street. Musicals are usually more stressful and take more time to rehearse, but the cast and crew for Anne of Green Gables are excited for an audience to see what they’ve been working on. Sophia Fisher, a junior at Wakefield High School and star of the show, has been performing for 11 years.
“Being able to hear [the audience] laugh and hear them clap makes you feel like it’s worth doing what you’re doing,” Fisher said. “Not all of [the shows] are going to be perfect but that’s how the show comes to life and gets its own personality.”
As previously mentioned, Fisher plays the lead role of Anne. At the beginning of the show, Anne is around 13 years old, which is a first for this actress.
“I tend to get more maternal characters and Anne is very, very bubbly and young,” Fisher said.
Her co-star is Ben Sherman, a sophomore at Wakefield High School. Sherman has been performing for six years and is playing Fisher’s father figure in the show, Matthew of Green Gables.
“[I like] the fact that I can be myself because I am so much like my character,” Sherman said. “I’m not very talkative, I’m independent and I’m a leader when I have to be.”
You go through a plethora of different emotions throughout the whole show and when you leave you feel okay.”
Throughout the show, we see Anne’s family grow to love and accept her. Her mother figure, played by senior Anastasia Crosby, learns how to care for the young girl as the show goes on. The audience sees the ups and downs of a family and raising a teenager, all with a melodic backing track.
“My favorite thing about my role is my costume,” Crosby said. “Marilla is stern yet sentimental, and I love that my costume reflects these attributes.”
Paul Orsett is the theatre teacher at Wakefield High School. In previous shows, Orsett has had two student stage managers. However, Anne of Green Gables is done with only his third-period theatre class, Studio A, so he is in charge of the usual stage manager duties along with directing both the technical and acting aspects of the show.
“I wear a lot of hats,” Orsett said. “I just need to trust that the people that are doing the jobs that need to be done are going to get them done.”
Technical theatre is a very important role in every production. In this show, the students have designed the lights, their own costumes, set pieces and found or created the props being used in the show.
Sherman is also on the set-building committee for this musical.
“Lots of preparation and pre-made things [go into building a set],” Sherman said. “For this musical, we have a lot of scaffolding along the back and the sides of the stage.”
The cast and crew for Anne of Green Gables have worked tirelessly for the past three months to make this production the best it can be. The show is going to tug on the audience’s heartstrings and leave them feeling content when walking out of the theatre.
“You can relate in so many different ways [with] the stories and the relationships that you have,” Orsett said. “You go through a plethora of different emotions throughout the whole show and when you leave you feel okay.”
For anyone interested in seeing the talent of the Wakefield High School Theatre Company and this musical based on the L. M. Montgomery novel, the high school is performing it March 23, 24 and 25 all at seven pm. Tickets are online only and can be purchased on the Wakefield High School theatre website.
“At the end, you’re [on stage] with your [chosen] family doing what you love and you get to get lost in it,” Fisher said. “You’ve put in the work and now you get to be free.”