SHERBURNE - The Sherburne-Earlville Drama Club will take the stage of the S-E High School Auditorium this weekend to perform their rendition of Arthur Miller’s classic work, “The Crucible.”
Published in 1953, “The Crucible” is a fictionalized story of the Salem witch trials of the 17th century told through the lens of the McCarthyism movement that blacklisted accused communists throughout the better half of the 1950s.
“It’s really a dramatic play,” said Dalton Peek who plays the lead role of John Proctor. “I think that people will be shocked at the end because it’s so upsetting.”
Miller wrote “The Crucible” as a reminder of the inevitable dangers of widespread lies and deceit, and the destructive power of sanctioned violence. The play focuses on characters John Proctor and his young lover, Abigail Williams. When Proctor decides to end the affair with Williams, she leads an occult rite to wish death upon Proctor’s wife, Elizabeth. When the ritual is discovered, it leads to a series of accusations of witchcraft that shake Salem’s rigid religious and moral convictions.
Play director Colleen Law-Tefft said her hopes are to leave the audience with a clear-cut message: Nothing good comes from mob mentality.
“The intolerance that you see on stage is just so horrible, and I think we still see a lot of intolerance in the world today,” she added. “I hope that this play will point that out.”
“The play shows that the justice system doesn’t always serve justice,” said Shayla Sullivan, who plays the part of Elizabeth Proctor. “It shows that people can be deceitful and make up lies that ruin people’s lives.”
Themes aside, the cast and crew say they’re ready for opening night. Students will be presenting the show in the round, meaning audience members will be on the stage with the actors, seated on three sides of the playing area.
“It should feel as if the audience were right in the courtroom with the characters,” said Law-Tefft.
“This week rehearsing has been rough,” said Molly Karaman – Abigail Williams in the play. “Getting everybody together in such a large-scale production, and having everybody here for all necessary rehearsals has been very hard, but I think we’ll be able to pull it off.”
Curtain time is 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Admission is $5 per person, although seating is limited.