A Preview of Winterfest

Posted: January 9, 2013

Byline: Excerpted from The Lawrence, By Andreas Vandris '14

After their successful performance of "Once on This Island" this past fall, the students of the Lawrenceville theatre program are now turning their attention to rehearsals for Winterfest, the collective name for a group of short, student-directed plays, which are staged in early February. Despite their brevity, with most of the plays being around 15-20 minutes long, the performances are always very popular with the student body.

The unique nature of the program emphasizes student independence and organization, as directors are tasked with every aspect of assembling a production, from choosing a script to holding auditions and rehearsals. For some directors, it will be their second year directing, while others are stepping up to the role for the first time. Justin Parratt '14 chose a script that follows a poorly led team of improv actors who attempt to put on a performance but end up fighting amongst themselves. The ironic element of the play is coupled with many comedic aspects, which Parratt hopes will "have the whole audience laughing at every other line."

Comedies are popular due to their widespread appeal -- Helen Chen's '13 capstone play, "The Importance of Being Earnest," focuses on ridiculing British high culture. She has high confidence in her cast, saying that "they have the potential to absolutely kill this, so I'm aiming to keep the energy level high throughout, and I hope everyone will just have a great time." The relaxed atmosphere encourages many students to participate, even those without previous theatrical experience.

Other student directors choose to work in teams, taking responsibility for slightly larger productions. Shaili Babbar '13, Celia Aidinoff '13, and Samantha Essig '13 are all veterans of the Winterfest scene, and are returning for another year. "After having directed a short comedy, 'Slop Culture,' last year, the three of us are really excited to use the skills and techniques we previously learned to make this year's play the best it can be," said Babbar.

Maya Peterson '14 is looking towards taking a different path from the comedy route in order to engage the audience in a different way – politics. "It's political and a bit eerie," Peterson said. "I've always been a fan of plays that don't quite click right away when first reading the script … I think that with a lot of hard work, my absolutely terrific cast, I can really push the envelope and make this production into something truly fantastic and thought-provoking."

Naina Sahrawat '14 is also taking a somewhat different approach, directing a play consisting of many short scenes of people on dates. It is also an ambitious production, as there are many more cast members than in most of the other Winterfest shows.

Those plays are just a few of the many that will be a part of Winterfest this year. Over the course of the winter term, directors and casts will devote many hours to preparing for their highly-anticipated performances.

For additional information on all Lawrenceville School news, please contact Lisa M. Gillard Hanson, director of public relations, at lgillard@lawrenceville.org.

Posted: January 9, 2013

Recent News

  • Big Red Heads to College

    Posted May 20, 2016

    May is a month of celebration at Lawrenceville as the School community recognizes the varied and impressive achievements of its many students. The School recently honored members of the Class of 2016 who will continue their careers as student-athletes next fall at some of the nation's best colleges and universities. We wish them all continued success!

  • The Contour Wins Courage in Journalism Award

    Posted May 19, 2016

    Lawrenceville’s student publication, The Contour, has won the Courage in Journalism award from Youth Journalism International (YJI). The award is given to an individual youth journalist, journalism educator, or student newspaper that showed particular courage in pursuing a story despite danger, official roadblocks, or other unusual obstacles. It is one of the organization’s highest honors. While the award was created seven years ago, this is only the third time YJI felt an entry merited the honor.

  • 2015-16 Heely Scholars Present Research

    Credit: Serena He '18/The Lawrence
    Posted May 19, 2016

    On Thursday, May 12, Lawrenceville’s 2015-16 Heely Scholars – Akash Bagaria ‘16, Eva Blake ‘16, Larry Cummings ‘16, Gina Kahng ‘16, Anna Milliken ‘16, Simran Suri ‘16, Gina Kahng ‘16, Larry Cummings ‘16, and Trisha Mukherjee ‘16 – presented their research through an exhibit held at the vestibule of the Noyes History Center.

  • Boys Win 10th, Girls 14th Consecutive Prep A Outdoor Track Titles

    Posted May 19, 2016

    The Big Red track dynasty continues! The boys won their 10th and the girls their 14th consecutive Prep A Outdoor Track State Championship titles yesterday at the Peddie School in Hightstown, N.J.

  • Boys’ Tennis Aces 5th Consecutive MAPL Title

    Posted May 18, 2016

    The Big Red boys’ varsity tennis team aced its fifth consecutive MAPL title on May 14. Lawrenceville’s 27 team points defeated Mercersburg (24), Hill (18), Blair (15), Peddie (14), and Hun (7).