Frosh Players, Fresh Faces

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Nicolette Weinbaum ’12
Staff Writer

Freshman Players gather behind stage.

With the tingle of anticipation, Will Haskell ’14 walks into Staples, looking forward to an exciting freshman year with a big challenge ahead of him. With middle school experience of plays behind him, he puts his strongest foot forward during auditions hoping to land a spot within the competitive Players program.

A small group of students are selected to perform in the first Staples performance of the Broadway hit “Curtains” with a significant number of talented freshmen taking on challenging roles and responsibilities.

Intimidating sets, a talented returning cast, and the fear of the unknown are enough to scare off a good number of freshmen who had planned to audition for the production of “Curtains”. Although the impressive reputation of Players is daunting, brave talent emerges from the class of 2014.

“I have always liked doing theatre since I was seven years old. Players was sort of always the goal. I’ve been watching their shows since I was little,” Haskell said.

Haskell is cast as the understudy for Matt Van Gessel ’11 who plays the role of Christopher Belling. After receiving this strong role at such a young age, it would be natural for him to experience some envy from some of the more seasoned Players.

“I didn’t experience much jealousy, but I’m sure that some people were upset that they didn’t make it. Most understood though, because they realize that there can’t be too many kids in the show,” Haskell said.

Faye Osgood ’14 is cast in “Curtains” as well. As a newcomer to the program, Osgood finds comfort in looking up to older students that she admires.

“I look up to Clay Singer, Michelle Pauker, and Tyler Jent. I did shows with them so I know that they’re amazing singers and actors- they have made it so far and this is only their sophomore year playing leading roles,” Osgood said. “Players is much more intense compared to Bedford, but they do produce amazing shows and it is fun to be involved in them.”

Osgood feels that all of the upperclassman in the program are very friendly and that there’s no need to be intimidated by them.

David Roth, head of Staples Players department, says that he’s looking for kids with future potential.

“I’m looking for kids who are really interested in being a part of a production. Kids we feel will be in it for the long haul,” Roth said. “Players do a great job of welcoming underclassman. Each freshman is assigned to a buddy to talk to, say hi to in the halls. Our goal is to get them to feel comfortable.”

According to Roth, 30-40 freshmen are involved in the production and 10 are involved in the show.

“This year’s freshmen are a great group of kids-onstage and backstage- they’re terrific and we’re thrilled to have them,” Roth said.