Spring Play tells the story of orphans searching for a home

By Jackie Ruiz, Editor

The Senior High Spring Play, The Orphan Train, opens Friday in the auditorium with a second performance on Saturday.

            The Spring Play at Senior High unravels the story of how nine children find new beginnings at unexpected places after losing everything.

Set in the 1900s, The Orphan Train, talks about the historical journey of orphans from the East Coast that travel across the United States by train. They go from town to town looking for parents to adopt them. They have hopes of finding a home and discover what “home” truly means to them.

Christine Kier, co-director of the play, said that students are really excited because the play is based on true historical events.

“I think it’s really important and amazing that we get the chance to show other students what happened during this time period,” she said.

Kier added that the main message they want to get across is that home can mean many things for different people. 

“It’s a different case for each person. In the story, one orphan ends up working at a carnival, some end up with two parents and others live in single parent homes,” she said. “They each find their way in the world and overcome their own obstacles to find a place that they can call their own.”

Kier explained that The Orphan Train was a play they were initially going to do in 2020 but couldn’t because of the pandemic.

“Mr. Alexander and I talked about doing it this year and it just happened to work out. We re-casted the cast and some students got to keep their original parts,” she said.

The play does not have any leads, but mainly focuses on the orphans and their stories.

            “Each character will have a chance to tell their own story at their own time,” Kier said.

The audience will be most excited for the costumes, the meaning behind the story, and the unique seating arrangements, said Kier.

“The audience will be sitting on top of risers that are put on the stage in a circle. The characters will perform and tell their stories in the middle of that circle,” she said.

She added that students are working incredibly hard and that the preparations are going well.

“This week we are practicing by doing two vignettes, small-scale scenes, a day. Next week everyone will have rehearsals, so that we can put all of the pieces together.”

            Some of the cast members include: Abigail Casarez as Frank/Frankie, Chloe Holsinger as Peggen, Elise Warner as Annie, Ellia Mora as Evie, Logan Ripp as Lucky, Alex Weaver as Raymond, Kerrigan Jelinek as Mary, and Sophia Mora as Little Lucy. 

            Kier said she hopes students and parents will come, enjoy, and catch the true meaning of the play.

            “Students are really appreciating the history behind each orphans’ story and we want to share that with everyone who decides to come,” she said.

The Orphan Train will be performed on April 1 and April 3 at 7:30 in the auditorium. The cast will also perform the play on April 4 at a museum in Aurora.

Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for children. Goodwill donations will be accepted for The Plainsman Museum in Aurora. Students wearing their ID’s can attend at no cost.

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