SYRACUSE — A classic C.S. Lewis children’s story, a timeless tale of good versus evil, is coming to the auditorium stage for the Wawasee High School fall play. “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” will be performed at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 17, and Saturday, Nov. 18, and also at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 19.
Set in Narnia, it is a land of talking animals and mythical creatures ruled for 100 years by a witch. During World War II, four children are sent to stay at a castle in Narnia and meet the characters including the Lion, who is a Christ like figure, and others. “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe” is a Christian allegory, one of several written by Lewis.
The play is being directed by Kristin Bonner and Mindy Coblentz and is a reunion of sorts for the two. Both directed the same show more than 20 years ago at Wawasee, then took time off to raise their children before coming back. And each director has a child performing in the play.
Bonner noted she directed shows at the school from January 1993 to the fall of 2002.
The cast includes 28 students, not one of which is really considered a lead character, Bonner noted. “It has been so long since we’ve done this show and we really like the story,” she said. “The set is made to look like pages out of a book.” It looks as though the trees and shrubs have been cut out of the Narnia book and each set piece was hand lettered by the cast.
She commented the play is good for all ages and is a simple story to follow. “There is a character for everybody (to relate to),” she said. “The characters are just typical people.”
Times do change and the interpretation of the Lewis story is “a bit edgier” than other shows in the past at WHS. One character, for example, is sporting dreadlocks. “We made it a little more hip for the teen crowd,” Bonner said. “We added some music and dancing.”
Cast members with the character they play in parentheses are as follows: Nick Lesko (Asian), Bronwyn Bonner (White Witch), Gabrielle Fiscus (Lucy), Evan Coblentz (Edmund), Gynnae Hochstetler (Susan), Clayton Hicks (Peter), Forrest Holsten (Mr. Beaver), Grace Morrison (Mrs. Beaver), Brianne Stewart (Unicorn), Armando Rodriguez (Centaur), Conner Lucas (Tumnus), Evan Richey (Fenris Ulf), Rebekah Whirledge (Dwarf), Ian McClintock (Father Christmas), Nyla White (Elf) and Mercedes Winkelman (White Stag).
Ensemble members include Lacey Helfers, Claudia Stuckman, Genevieve Cierpilowski, Sadie Cowan, Emily McDonald, Adrianna Clark, Kaitlin Yoder, Hannah Clayton, Jenna Weiler, Amanda Foy, Lila Fierek and Tess Fancil.
Tickets cost $5 and can be reserved by calling the school at (574) 457-3147.