THEATER: Poly’s theater performs the play “Steel Magnolias” this week.
By Esther Whang, Staff Writer
Poly theater’s performances of “Steel Magnolias,” directed by Kaiah Costa, take place from September 21 to September 23. It is an all-female play, set in Louisiana, focusing on a close group of friends who have to cope with the loss of one of their own.
This comedy-drama play derives from the tragedy that Robert Harling, the writer of “Steel Magnolias,” experienced when his sister, Susan, died in 1985. A friend of Harling’s encouraged him to write his experience down to help cope with his sister’s death. Although Harling originally wrote the story for his nephew’s sake, it evolved in days into a play published in 1987, and was performed Off-Broadway before being changed for the Steel Magnolias movie (1989).
The “Steel Magnolias” cast, especially the director, has been working hard over the summer to prepare for their performances in September. Their performance mixes elements from the movie and the original play.
The “Steel Magnolias” rehearsals were running fine until recently. Not long ago, the cast was told that one of their members had to drop out. As a result, they were missing a character in their six-cast play just days before opening night. Despite the setback, the members insisted on going through with the performances, trying to find someone to fill the role for the character. After working so hard, the cast wasn’t just about to give up.
“I’ve spent the summer with these lovely ladies and we’ve been working so hard; I hope our hard work pays off,” Emma Carson (11) said.
Fortunately, the cast was able to find a replacement and continue, demonstrating their resilience.
Despite the recent obstacle, the cast members are excited for their first performance this Thursday, and hope Poly enjoys it as much as they do.
“I think [“Steel Magnolias” is] a smaller play but it has a lot of unexpected talent. I had a lot of fun working with our whole cast and crew,” Trinity Long (12) said.