Sahuaro Advanced Drama’s One Act Dramatic: The Dark Road

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Sahuaro Advanced Drama’s One Act Dramatic: The Dark Road

The cast of Dark Road standing in front of the final prop-the noose used to hang Greta

The cast of Dark Road standing in front of the final prop-the noose used to hang Greta

Andy Mourelatos

The cast of Dark Road standing in front of the final prop-the noose used to hang Greta

Andy Mourelatos

Andy Mourelatos

The cast of Dark Road standing in front of the final prop-the noose used to hang Greta

Andy Mourelatos, A&E Editor

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Sahuaro’s Advanced Drama program, Troupe 215, recently put together and performed their one-act dramatic: Dark Road written by Laura Lundgren Smith. The production is set during the Holocaust and follows a former Nazi guard who worked in a concentration camp, played by Sahuaro Senior Macy Sigafus,  named Greta. Greta is reflecting on her time as a guard to a journalist named Daimler, played by Sahuaro Junior Ceasar Quero, who asks her questions about what it was like being a Nazi and digging as deep as he can into Greta’s mind throughout the production.

The front page of Dark Road’s program, along with the ticket stub (yellow)

It took place in Sahuaro’s Little Theater on November 12th and November 13th. The play used the theater’s stage as well as the small platform across from the stage to bounce back and forth between reliving Greta’s past, and the present-Daimler interviewing Greta. It had only one act with no intermission and lasted just over 30 minutes. The play opens with a short introduction to the main character, Greta. She is then confronted by Daimler, who introduces himself as a journalist who wants to know more about her time as a Nazi guard. He mentions that he used to be a Nazi guard himself, and Greta reluctantly allows him to ask her just a few questions.

The inside of the show’s program, showing the people who made the show happen

Greta begins her recollection by introducing us to her younger sister Lise, played by Sahuaro Junior Oliva Easton. Throughout the play, Greta tries to leave Lise out of her work, since she disagrees strongly with what Greta is doing to the camp inmates. 

Greta’s work as a guard involves her and two other female guards beating and harassing the Jewish prisoners. At one point, the guards ask the inmates to give them all their personal belongings. This is a major turning point for Greta when she is commanded to rip a necklace off one of the prisoner’s necks. She takes this necklace and tries to give it to Lise as a birthday present, but she rejects the gift when she learns it’s origin.

By the end of the play, it is revealed that Daimler wasn’t a guard in Auschwitz, but a prisoner who escaped with his life. Lise is caught giving the prisoners scraps of food by Greta and the Commandant of the camp, played by Sahuaro Junior Cameron Thacker. Greta admits that Lise is her sister, and says that she was giving the prisoners food, with no remorse for her life or what may happen to her. Lise is taken by the Commandant and other guards, and Greta is blamed for her sister’s actions, receiving a death penalty.

In the last scene of the play, Greta is hung by her former friends and the Commandant, saying that three weeks later, the camp was liberated by the Allied forces and Lise was not able to escape alive. The stage goes dark as Greta falls into the noose around her neck.

Dark Road was an excellent example of showing great storytelling, character development, and portrayal of emotion in a short one-act play. It had no unnecessary scenes, and it doesn’t waste any time progressing the story. The acting was on par for each of the students and I was extremely immersed in these characters’ stories, even forgetting that I was at a school play halfway through. This production was extremely powerful and thought-provoking and one of, if not the best, plays I’ve seen by Sahuaro’s Drama department.

Dark Road was taken to the AIA State Theatre Festival and Troupe 215 received a Superior in the One Act category. This is the second-highest award that can be received and is a big accomplishment for all the students involved. 

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