Friday, April 4, 2003

Play about war takes new tone

Tristate reacts to war

[photo] At rehearsal, Radar (Jake Mayer) puts his ear to the ground. Other characters, from left, are Trapper John (David Cooker), Hawkeye (Sam Murch) and Ugly John Black (Alex Rembado).
(Tony Jones photo)
| ZOOM |
The upcoming production of M*A*S*H at Finneytown High School was nearly canceled because of its war theme, but it has become a teachable moment beyond expectations.

"I considered pulling the show," said Shawn Maus, director of Finneytown Theater. "I didn't want to have it look like the school was promoting war or making light of it since M*A*S*H is a comedy."

Maus' misgivings were put to rest by a groundswell of support from students and staff.

More than 95 students from the high school and middle school make up the cast and crew. Faculty from both schools are "extras" and help supervise sewing, publicity and set construction.

"We have brought together not just a group of 'theater' students, but united a school in an effort to showcase not just talent, but a support of school, community and national pride," Maus said.

The play will be at 7:30 p.m. April 10-12 and 2 p.m. April 13 at the high school, 8916 Fontainebleau Terrace. Tickets are $6 for adults and $3 for children under age 12.Senior citizens with a Golden Buckeye Card will be admitted free.

Drama students and staff are dedicating all four productions to soldiers stationed in Iraq and past veterans. An Honor Guard will be present at each show, and veterans in the audience will be recognized.

Cindy Kranz

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