The lights brightened on the stage in Hughes Recital Hall to a trial having just taken place and leaving the jury members to decide whether a boy accused of murder was innocent or guilty.
Bickering, turmoil and even some climactic fighting scenes broke out on stage during the first production of the season for the theater department. The play was 12 Angry Jurors and was shown Nov. 7 and 8.
With a cast consisting of 13 members, the play was based on the similiar work, 12 Angry Men.
All the actors developed their own personality to the character they were portraying to the point that the audience could feel anger from the cast in the auditorium.
Sophomore and juror number five, Marcus Repp, was one of the jurors who began to question the case near the beginning of the play.
Repp and the other actors had to become accustomed to their character to make their performance believable.
“We had to research . . . our character and adapt to the time period of the late 1950s,” he said.
Most of the actors have been on stage before, either at UMHB or in high school.
Juror number nine Ashley Ramirez, has been acting in plays ever since high school. She was in Macbeth along with more.As much as being on stage is thrilling, she said there’s a better aspect of acting.
“Meeting all of the people is the best,” she said. “We all put so much dedication into it, and along the way we develop great friendships.”
With any production, there are multiple jobs that have to be completed for it to be a smooth showing. There are casting of the roles, set design, costume design, music coordinating and so on.
However, there has to be someone in charg. For the 12 Angry Jurors the job belonged to senior Samantha Anderson, the stage director.
“Basically I had to make sure everyone was at rehearsal, on time, make sure everyone knew where and when rehearsal was, read parts of missing actors, borrow props from other theaters, make random phone calls, (and) follow the script every night so actors could call for lines,” she said.“Being the stage manager is kind of having to be all over the place. I had to take care of the details and technical things.”
With a neraly packed house both nights of parents and friends, the outcome of the production was positive. Sophomore nursing major, Sarah Herriott, went to the Saturday showing and enjoyed the diverse characters on stage.
“The best thing about the play was getting to see all of the people I typically interact with on a daily basis on stage performing,” she said.
Another spectator was nursing major, Ashley Hibbard, who also attended the Saturday showing.
“I enjoyed how each character was their own. None of the 12 jurors were the same by any means,” she said.
“Some of the people were funny while others were really frightening with loud and explosive actions.”
A large amount of time and hard work went into the production of the play. Even though the only ones seen are the actors, Anderson wants everyone to know that those who participated behind the scenes put in long hours and dedication as well.
She also would like to congratulate and honor all actors on their performance.
“Whether you are in the show as an actor or part of the crew, seeing everything come together on opening night is an amazing feeling. All the hard work pays off,” she said.“Thanks to everyone who came to the show and supported UMHB Theatre. We are a small group that needs all the support we can get, so thank you.”