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Area high schools win state One Act titles
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The cast and crew of Lakeview Academy’s one-act play won the A State Championship for their “Addams Family” production.

GHSA State One Act Play Championship
Class A, AA and AAAA competed Saturday. Qualifying class AAA, AAAAA and AAAAAA schools will compete Saturday.
AAAAAA will compete at Veterans High School in Kathleen.
AAAAA will compete at Perry High School in Perry.
AAA will compete at Baldwin County High School in Milledgeville.

Two area high schools recently won state titles for their one-act plays, both of which told stories of family struggles and values.

Lakeview Academy won the 2014 Class A state championship for its production of “The Addams Family,” while North Hall High School drama students won the Class AAAA championship for the play titled “Over the River and Through the Woods.”

Rachel Cottrell, Lakeview senior who played Morticia Addams, said the play is about the traditional Addams family, except Wednesday is older and has a love interest.

“It’s about her internal struggle to find a balance between who she is and what she wants to be,” Cottrell said. “And it’s about how that affects the entire family.”

Cottrell, who was named “best actress” at the competition Saturday, said her character is the matriarch of the family. Shan Suen, a junior who played Gomez Addams, said his character spends the play torn between his wife and daughter.

“He’s in a pickle throughout the play,” Suen said.

Junior Sam Dubin played Pugsley, Wednesday’s brother. Dubin said Pugsley is the “tender” character, and spends the play trying to retain his closeness to his sister.

North Hall’s production of “Over the River and Through the Woods” also followed a family struggle, according to senior Ryan Taylor, who played the show’s main character, Nick.

“His parents and sister have moved away and it starts off with him trying to tell his grandparents that he has a promotion in Seattle,” Taylor said. “Throughout the play it describes the troubles his grandparents have with him leaving his family behind.”

Riley Smith, a North Hall senior, played one of the grandfathers, Frank. Smith said the play is about family ties.

“I think the message of the show is to hold on to the family you have as long as you can,” Smith said. “You never know how long you have somebody.”

Jan Ewing, drama director at North Hall, said senior Paulina LoCicero was also named “best actress.” Ewing said it was the school’s first one-act state championship win.

Cece Conrath, drama director at Lakeview, said this was the school’s second year in a row to bring home the state one-act title.

“This is back-to-back for Lakeview, so we’re excited about that,” she said. “We graduated 22 seniors last year that were instrumental in that production. The group this year has had big shoes to fill, but they were completely amazing.”

Georgia Whitehead, a junior at Lakeview who played Wednesday, said winning left her speechless.

“It was so much fun and such an honor to work with such a talented cast and dedicated crew and the parents who helped us out,” she said. “It was just awesome to get the recognition for the struggles we dealt with.”

Taylor said the entire cast and crew from North Hall “had a passion for the piece.”

“I can’t explain how much we all cared about this,” he said. “It was so inspirational and I think it really showed through our performance.”

Conrath said there was a line in the play that said, “It’s family first and family last,” and they used the line as a motto throughout their time working on the act.

Ewing said “Over the River and Through the Woods” had a feeling of saying goodbye to the people in your life, something to which her seniors could relate.

“For them, some of the emotions of having to say goodbye to people were very real, because they’re about to graduate,” she said. “They really gave it their all and you could see it.”

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