A Heavy Dose of Society

Have you ever wondered what life is like after death?

Well, here’s hoping your afterlife isn’t as off the wall as this.

The Tabor drama department is up and running once again with the play “Miss Witherspoon,” which will be shown in the Black Box Theatre at Tabor Academy from February 28 to March 2 at 7:30 pm.

The play features a hapless woman named Veronica (aka Miss Witherspoon), played by Brittany Montuori, ’13, who kills herself because she is upset with what the world has become. She enters a bardo which happens to be framed as a miniature play in this version. Maryamma, played by Kristiana Sotiriou, ‘15, continuously reincarnates Veronica into different societies.

What makes this comedy of suicide hilarious is the way these societies are so different; yet, they each give the same shockwave of laughter to the audience.

For example, Colby Magratten, ’14, gets to play two different types of mothers: one extremely happy one, and one extremely abusive. The vast difference of the two roles is not only an unpleasant reminder of society, but also a new experience for Magratten.

“I get to scream at a lot other people during the play,” she said. “It’s not something I have done before during my acting career.”

While the plot in the play has remained the same, some of the specific details of the play have been altered.

The bardo is filled with toys, such as a swing set and a slide, to fit Maryamma’s adjusted personality as a child. Plus, the sleazy man, a deadly drug dealer played by Derek Huang, ’15, is given the added feature of being blind.

“We have kept adding silly things to make it interesting,” Director Donn Tyler said. “The only feature that we had to keep consistent with the original play was the transparent chair in the bardo because of the original director’s recommendation.”

The play is the second theatrical production over the span of a week, following the musical “Damn Yankees!,” which took place from February 21 to 23.

Huang and Matt Hlady, ’13, who was also in the musical, play varying fathers. Demi Hunte-Josiah, ’13, plays varying roles, including a teacher who fails miserably to communicate with the abusive mother, prompting one of Miss Witherspoon’s many deaths.

“At first, the thought of suicide made me skeptical,” Magratten said, “but the play has come together nicely, and I am excited to see how the audience reacts.”

By Nick Veronesi

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