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PCHS advances to regional competition

Even with a name like “It’s All Greek to Me,” the cast of Pulaski County High School students in this one-act play managed to translate a winning message to the judges at the River Ridge District one-act competition.
This past Saturday, PCHS and five other schools competed in the district one-act play competition held at PCHS.
PCHS ended the day with a second-place spot in the competition, meaning they will progress to the regional level on Nov. 15, which will be hosted at PCHS, according to Jeff McCoy, theatre director. He noted that Blacksburg High School’s one-act placed first and will move on to the regional competition as well.
“It’s All Greek to Me” is an original comedy written by the cast, which McCoy described as “an absurdist adaptation of the Greek play “Lysistrata,”” written by Aristophanes.
In “It’s All Greek to Me,” the theatre world has fallen on bad times, so character “Erikestrada” calls a group of actors together to swear an oath that, as a form of protest, they will not act in any more plays, movies or even commercials until something of substance is written.
Following the style of Greek theatre, McCoy said “It’s All Greek to Me” features a bit of political humor based around current events, including characterizations of Sarah Palin and Oprah Winfrey.
David Johnson, an associate professor within the theatre department at Virginia Tech who served as a judge at last Saturday’s competition, commented on that aspect of the show, saying, “I was particularly pleased to see Aristophanes so accurately evoked consistently through to the end of the play. I think that’s much better — the actual contemporary reference — than trying to keep within 5th century Greece. The Sarah Palin portrayal was particularly apt.”
The play also includes a Greek chorus, complete with a “diva” waiting for her big break, and an original gospel musical number.
Two cast members from “It’s All Greek to Me” received acting awards at the district competition. Those included Hayes Owens for his portrayal of “Erikestrada” and Devin Altizer, who played “Larry.”
In addition, three students received honorable mention for their performances.
Those students were Ed Chitwood, who played the role of artistic director/Dionysus, and Randall Dean and Megan Altizer, for their portrayal of the Statues of Apollo and Athena.
Cast member Josh Worrell said he believes the judges were impressed by the fact that a majority of the show is done as an ensemble piece, and by the “many colorful characters” that made Lysistrata come alive to the audience.
“It’s a good show,” McCoy said, noting its creativeness and how the cast members committed to carrying out the story. “I think we stand a good chance (at regionals).”
Judges for the district competition included Johnson, along with Cindy Blevins, an actress from the New River Valley who specializes in opera, Pat Wilhelms, artistic director of the Roanoke Children’s Theatre, and Thom Moore, who has worked as an actor with the Wohlfahrt Haus in Wytheville and is an adjunct professor at Hollins University.
Other cast members include: Kaity Albert, John Greene, Sara Ratcliff, Josh Richards, Roland Tucker, Brittany Finn, Becky Patten, Meghan Ratcliffe, Brian Snider, Eileen Yost, Emily Landreth, Chey Eller, Jordan Price, Ashlee Linkous, Tinsley Long, Megan Turpin, Marissa Clark, J.R. Ratcliff, Kristi Carden, Matt Clontz, Jordyn Collins, Lee Tolley and Josh Worrell.
Student director is Aja Wood and stage manager is Jordan Phillips. Tech members are Ian Simpkins, Jon Simpkins and Zach Kilgore. Musicians include Sam Hester, Cody Keener and Luke Clark. Tech support includes Mallory Webb, Hayle Barbour and Thomy Owens.
To qualify as a one-act and place in the competition, each play has to be 35 minutes in duration or less.
If the cast places first or second on Nov. 15, they will head to the state level of the one-act competition, which will be held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Performing Arts Center in Charlottesville on Dec. 1.

PCHS advances to regional competition

Even with a name like “It’s All Greek to Me,” the cast of Pulaski County High School students in this one-act play managed to translate a winning message to the judges at the River Ridge District one-act competition.
This past Saturday, PCHS and five other schools competed in the district one-act play competition held at PCHS.
PCHS ended the day with a second-place spot in the competition, meaning they will progress to the regional level on Nov. 15, which will be hosted at PCHS, according to Jeff McCoy, theatre director. He noted that Blacksburg High School’s one-act placed first and will move on to the regional competition as well.
“It’s All Greek to Me” is an original comedy written by the cast, which McCoy described as “an absurdist adaptation of the Greek play “Lysistrata,”” written by Aristophanes.
In “It’s All Greek to Me,” the theatre world has fallen on bad times, so character “Erikestrada” calls a group of actors together to swear an oath that, as a form of protest, they will not act in any more plays, movies or even commercials until something of substance is written.
Following the style of Greek theatre, McCoy said “It’s All Greek to Me” features a bit of political humor based around current events, including characterizations of Sarah Palin and Oprah Winfrey.
David Johnson, an associate professor within the theatre department at Virginia Tech who served as a judge at last Saturday’s competition, commented on that aspect of the show, saying, “I was particularly pleased to see Aristophanes so accurately evoked consistently through to the end of the play. I think that’s much better — the actual contemporary reference — than trying to keep within 5th century Greece. The Sarah Palin portrayal was particularly apt.”
The play also includes a Greek chorus, complete with a “diva” waiting for her big break, and an original gospel musical number.
Two cast members from “It’s All Greek to Me” received acting awards at the district competition. Those included Hayes Owens for his portrayal of “Erikestrada” and Devin Altizer, who played “Larry.”
In addition, three students received honorable mention for their performances.
Those students were Ed Chitwood, who played the role of artistic director/Dionysus, and Randall Dean and Megan Altizer, for their portrayal of the Statues of Apollo and Athena.
Cast member Josh Worrell said he believes the judges were impressed by the fact that a majority of the show is done as an ensemble piece, and by the “many colorful characters” that made Lysistrata come alive to the audience.
“It’s a good show,” McCoy said, noting its creativeness and how the cast members committed to carrying out the story. “I think we stand a good chance (at regionals).”
Judges for the district competition included Johnson, along with Cindy Blevins, an actress from the New River Valley who specializes in opera, Pat Wilhelms, artistic director of the Roanoke Children’s Theatre, and Thom Moore, who has worked as an actor with the Wohlfahrt Haus in Wytheville and is an adjunct professor at Hollins University.
Other cast members include: Kaity Albert, John Greene, Sara Ratcliff, Josh Richards, Roland Tucker, Brittany Finn, Becky Patten, Meghan Ratcliffe, Brian Snider, Eileen Yost, Emily Landreth, Chey Eller, Jordan Price, Ashlee Linkous, Tinsley Long, Megan Turpin, Marissa Clark, J.R. Ratcliff, Kristi Carden, Matt Clontz, Jordyn Collins, Lee Tolley and Josh Worrell.
Student director is Aja Wood and stage manager is Jordan Phillips. Tech members are Ian Simpkins, Jon Simpkins and Zach Kilgore. Musicians include Sam Hester, Cody Keener and Luke Clark. Tech support includes Mallory Webb, Hayle Barbour and Thomy Owens.
To qualify as a one-act and place in the competition, each play has to be 35 minutes in duration or less.
If the cast places first or second on Nov. 15, they will head to the state level of the one-act competition, which will be held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Performing Arts Center in Charlottesville on Dec. 1.