The first performance of the school year, “The Very Grey Matter of Edward Blank”, proves to do well with local audiences and those at the Georgia Theater Conference. After great ticket sales for the “one-act” show at Greater Atlanta Christian School, the cast won four awards for their moving performance that tackles the stigmas of mental illness.
The cast won the following awards at the competition:
- Overall Best Show
- Best Ensemble
- John Michael Vestal, as Edward Blank, Best Lead Actor
- Josh Swope, as Mr. Net, Best All-Star Cast
Each of the three judges gave an almost perfect score: 99/100, 98/100, and 98/100. When the judges offered their feedback to the troupe, one judge commented that their performance was “One of the most artistic shows she had ever seen with such a compelling message.”
The play introduces the audience to a talented ghostwriter who has isolated himself to focus on his craft, with only the company of his “figments”, the products of his Schizophrenia. These characters that season and improve his writing also cause riffs in other parts of his life. The performance featured the director’s assisting by senior Kennedy Tolson and choreography by junior Jasmine Jones, who played a figment named Bubak who communicates solely through dance and movement.
The original script held very little stage direction, which opened up the possibilities for actors’ interpretations and the director’s vision–which paid off.
“Our team went through a lot of research, creative meetings, line interpretation, acting exercises, problem-solving, and so much more to get to the final production,” said Kristy Winkes, GAC Theater Director. She says that so much of this interpretation process can be intimidating, but is well worth it.
The conference hosted hundreds of high schools from all over Georgia, meaning their competition consisted of some of the strongest theater programs in the state, including Milton High School, Davidson Fine Arts Academy, and Lakeside High School, whose performances included shows like “Glorious,” “A Wrinkle in Time,” and “Einstein’s Dream”, all of which are also technically advanced shows.
The talented cast including John Michael Vestal (Cumming, GA), Bronwyn Bailey (Peachtree Corners, GA), Victoria Griffin (Duluth, GA), Jasmine Jones (Duluth, GA), and Josh Swope (Suwanee, GA) will continue to perform the show at the Southeast Theater Conference in February.
Join us for upcoming plays, including Sound of Music, Raisin in the Sun, Les Miserables, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream.