the Set of the Cuckoo's Nest
A hush fell over the crowd as the curtain rose, and the stage
was shown in eerie green light. Standing alone, the figure of
Chief Bromben muses to himself in a voiceover, "Papa, they’re
foggin’ it in again. They’re foggin it in…"
This year, the Oakwood Theatre Society put on a production of
One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest, which ran December 3, 4
and 5. Based on the famous Ken Kesey novel of the same name, the
story is a classic tale of fighting against the powers that keep
all imprisoned. Viewed through the eyes of Chief Bromben (Jeff
Sears), the asylum is a prison run by the tyrannical Nurse Ratched
(Alessia Cosentino). The hospital is turned on its head however
with the arrival of a new patient, the bawdy fun loving Randall
Patrick McMurphy (Orion Keresztesi). McMurphy arrival rocks the
lives of the patients and threatens to shatter the tortuous world
Ratched has worked so hard to maintain.
The road to pulling such a play off was a long and bumpy one.
Jeff Jones, the director for Cuckoo’s nest and Oakwood’s
newest drama teacher, told us during one rehearsal that we were
"stabbing him in the face with a knife!" "Have
you ever tried to control 22 actors...19 of which were male?"
ask Stephanie Scardellatto, stage manager of the play and head
of Theatre Society. "Not to be too defeatist, but there were
times when I was sure it was impossible." In the weeks leading
up the performance, the actors stayed every night after school
until 9:00 p.m. to get the play where it needed to be. And all
this in the weeks leading up to exams.
But when the curtain went up on December 3, it was clear it had
all been worth it. When the final curtain fell on a sold out crowd,
the applause were thunderous. All those involved clearly felt
it was worth it too, and felt sad that it had finally come to
an end. Jeremy Powell, who played a lobotomy patient, felt as
if "the play had died in my arms, and there was nothing I
could do." Stephanie added that she felt "relief that
it was over...but like anything good, I almost felt like I could
have kept doing it forever."
With a cast off 22 people and a production crew that brought the
total number of people who worked on Cuckoo’s Nest up to
around 40 people, it would be impossible to mention everybody
by name. On behalf of theatre society, we’d like to thank
everyone who worked on One Flew over the Cuckoo’s nest,
especially the crew, makeup and costumes departments, who are
the behind the scenes wizards who make the magic happen. We’d
also like to thank all of those who came out to see the play:
your support made it all worth it. Special mention for Nick Lucifero,
who not only can do a rubiks cube in under a minute but can also
fall off a stage and have no one notice. Finally, to the stupid
window, for being an outlet for our rage and frustration.