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The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

The Student News Site of Fresno Christian High School

The Feather

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Legacy acts lost in love

Rarely do the stars line up for a relationship to blossom. Lost in love, the night sky for Romeo and Juliet appears in perfect harmony, with a few flat notes.

From topics like teen love and infatuation, to irresponsibility and a lack of perceived consequences, young people and adults often struggle to find the purpose for their lives. These issues often are picked up in the arts and literature.

With teenage issues throughout the play, Romeo and Juliet, drama adviser Tom McEntee still finds it ?one of the most laughable tragedies.? The drama class is scheduled to perform the classic play on Feb. 7-9, 2008.

Senior Sean O?Neal believes that tragic humor is a result of common behavior.

?It?s a comedy of manners rather than a comedy of errors,? O’Neal said. “In a comedy of errors it is based on a character’s errors and how they fix them, but a comedy of manners is a comedy based on the character of a person rather than the actions of a person.”

O’Neal believes he was chosen for the role of Romeo due to his confidence on stage and his versatility of the character. He tries to assert pieces of his own personality into all of his assigned characters.

?[In drama] I learn to express myself in new ways,? O?Neal said. ?I like being able to become anyone I want to be and reinvent characters.”

Ani Paparigian, ?09, the focus of The Feather?s Ani Watch, observes O?Neal?s ability to adapt to each character set before him.

?He?s very good at changing characters,? Paparigian said. ?He?s like a chameleon. He takes every character he’s given and makes it his own.?

In the past, O?Neal has starred in Much Ado Out West as Ben, a love-struck cowboy, and in Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Dr. Stuvensant, an angry farmer who has no patience for anyone.

After contributing to the class for three years, O?Neal created a close bond with McEntee.

?The dude is creative and bold,” McEntee said. “He takes my good ideas from the 80s and changes them to the 21st century. For instance, last year he did a sword fight with Anthony Johnson (?09). I suggested a sword fight, but Sean added a dagger to make it more interesting.?

Their relationship creates unique comments that mature from small talk to mammoth ideas used in their productions.

?He?s crazy, but he?s also a great teacher,? O?Neal said. ?I can feed off his advice and he?ll feed off my suggestions.?

Supplied with creativity, O?Neal generates memories whenever he steps onto the stage.

?Sophomore year, me and Anthony had a slap fight in Commedia Delight,? O?Neal said. ?We just kept hitting each other; improvising the whole thing.?

Johnson, a player on both the varsity football and baseball teams, reveals the hidden inspiration for the scene.

?We took it off of the idea from A Bug?s Life,? Johnson said. ?It was fun, but it hurt getting slapped over and over again. It actually gave me a big headache.?

O?Neal also affects underclassmen during performances. Stowe Empereur, ?11, participated in drama 7th grade, and rejoined this year.

?I haven?t worked much with Sean yet,? Empereur said, ?but he is very creative in the skits that I have seen.?

Cathy Robbins, ?10, transferred to the school her freshman year and immediately joined the class. After only a year in drama, Robbins notices O’Neal’s drama forte.

?Sean?s good at improvisation,? Robbins said. ?When a door fell on my head in a play, he just went along with it.?

O’Neal’s skill in improvisation and multiple years of drama experience encourages him to double as a second leader and teacher for the class. Paparigian looks up to O’Neal as a theatrical motivation and friend.

?He is always in charge,? Paparigian said. ?He knows what is going on.?

Although O’Neal’s heart is on the stage, he participates in other activities such as soccer, going to the gym and hanging out with friends.

Even though O?Neal has created an acting legacy on campus, he does not plan to continue after high school.

?I want to go to Thomas Aquinas College for four years, then go to law school to become a lawyer,? O?Neal said, ?but I?m open to many possibilities.?

McEntee claims faith in O’Neil’s future, believing that his student will succeed in every aspect of life he aspires towards.

?He can use me as a job reference any day.? McEntee said. ?I know that Sean will be successful wherever he goes because God has blessed him with creativity and an ability to work hard.?

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    Chris MullinsDec 16, 2009 at 6:47 am

    You go, girl!