PRESCOTT — For the first time in its theater history, Prescott High School presented a fall one-act performance, a play which certainly portrayed gothic, eerie fall nights with Halloween-like overtures creeping in this folktale: “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.”
Director Thomas Speltz said the new performance opportunity allows the high school to grow the students’ theater experiences which have included musicals in the spring. Speltz is also responsible for scoring the recorded music featured in the play.
Choir director Brittany Kamrath contributed as a play director. About 20 students dedicated their time and talent to the cast and crew for the hour show.
“The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by John Heimbuch and Jon Ferguson, is a story of a quaint yet peculiar old America village where new schoolteacher Ichabod Crane, as played by sophomore Kyle Holtan, finds himself admiring the main damsel Katrina Van Tassel, portrayed by senior Madeline Johnson, and subsequently gets caught up in a love triangle with Brom Bones, played by senior Brandon Rundquist. Brom, who is rather popular among the local ladies, had his sights set on proposing to Katrina.
His plan is nearly foiled by Ichabod, who also wants to marry Katrina, but Ichabod becomes haunted by the strange legends about Sleepy Hollow as told by the mischievous Brom and other townsfolk. In the end, Ichabod’s fate collides with the infamous Headless Horseman and Ichabod mysteriously disappears from the land.
The lead actors, Holtan, Johnson and Rundquist, said the students practiced for eight weeks to bring the show to life and agreed they felt very prepared and excited for their roles. Rundquist, who has performed at Prescott High School in the past, said he was interested in getting involved as an actor to know the story and present its tongue-in-cheek humor.
The crew behind the scenes managed to portray the illusive and enigmatic Headless Horseman with clever use of a sheet, a puppet and a light, giving the audience a sense of a nightmare come to life.
Other staging elements such as birch tree trunks, a background cemetery and an open picture frame for character monologues allowed the audience to mentally step inside the spooky scene and have a listen to Sleepy Hollow's supernatural stories.