It’s another version of a story everyone has heard countless times. The story of Cinderella and how she, with the help of her fairy godmother, had one special night that changed her life forever. To the point where shoes go flying – or at least in this case. Although the Deer Park High School freshman theater group did not specifically perform Cinderella, their rendition of The Ash Girl – A play based off of Cinderella – left the audience in thunderous applause and cheers that the freshmen group of actors and actresses will remember for the rest of their lives.
The Ash Girl is a two act performance created by Timberlake Wertenbaker published on June 12th, 2003. It is a play that has been described as lyrical and thought provoking. As a story based off of Cinderella, the cast of the play had some big shoes to fill – and throw off the stage.
The play features a cast size of 25 actors, which were topped with Izzy Martingano as Ashgirl and Nicholas Trevino as Prince Amir.
“I wanted to choose something with a large cast that had as many opportunities for students as possible to be on stage. It’s also very challenging,” Director RaMina Mirmortazavi, who made her directing debut at Deer Park with this show, said.
“[The debut show] was very different. I taught middle school for the past five years. It was a little overwhelming, but I think ultimately I’m very satisfied,” Ms. Mirmortazavi said.
On top of the directing debut of Ms. Mirmortazavi, it also featured debut of the freshmen class in the acting realm of Deer Park. The lead roles of Ashgirl and the Prince were heavy shoes to fill, considering the characters they are modeled after.
“I feel like there was a lot of pressure. It’s such a classic story that you kind of have to be good,” Izzy said.
On top of filling the acting shoes, they also wanted to do their best to ensure Ms. Mirmortazavi’s debut went smoothly.
“It made us feel very nervous because we didn’t know what to expect,” Nicholas said.
On the Friday premier of the play, an interesting and unscripted event occurred that left the actors in panic, but after quick thinking from senior theater student Alec White, resulted in a story that is one to be remembered. During a scene in the play which involved a lot of movement while in dresses, Ashgirl’s shoe went flying off the stage.
“I wanted to cry,” Izzy said.
“It was going to be like a diva meltdown,” Nicholas said.
When the shoe fell on the ground, White leaped in front of the audience to quickly toss the shoe back on stage. It’s one of those scenarios where the show must go on.
After the show, some of the cast knew their areas they needed to improve and quickly planned on how to fix it.
“I know I need to be more careful on the spacing because I hit Austen [Guzman] in the arm,” Nicholas said.
Overall, the performance was stunning and received a standing ovation from the audience, mixed with some laughter throughout the entire play.
Next, the cast and crew will shine up their shoes in preparation for their University Interscholastic League (UIL) One-Act Play competition which is on March 24th, 2016 at Baytown Lee College. Without a doubt, Ms. Mirmortazavi and her team will leave the other schools shaking in their boots with their UIL performance… Well, if the shoe fits…