by: Chase Hammond
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Central High School Theatre Department’s fall production, opened Thursday, November 17th to a packed house. As the audience arrived to the theater they immediately felt a sense of repression and hopelessness, just by looking at the set.
As the lights dimmed, the play began with a recording of a speech by John F. Kennedy. Slowly the story started to unwind in front of the audience and they had their eyes glued to the stage and felt their heartstrings being tugged on by the emotional roller coaster that is One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest. The story ends with an emotional scene of Cheswick crying over the dead McMurphy’s body and Ruckly standing over them in his usual crucifix pose, and thunderous applause erupted in the theater as the actors came on the stage one last time for that night’s curtain call.
As the lights came up, immediately the theater was filled with the excited chatter of the audience; many were discussing the moral concepts of the play, many others were just crying or getting emotional in some way. Friday’s performance went much the same way, with the audience biting their fingernails waiting for the next big dramatic scene, and the uproar of applause at the end of the show.
Saturday’s matinee had a plot twist to itself, any audience member had to make the decision whether to stay at home or brave the two feet of snow. It appeared the dedicated theatergoers and fans of Central High Theatre were willing to brave those tough conditions, because as the house opened at least three quarters of the seats were filled. These audience members were treated to the same wonderful performance that stunned Thursday and Friday’s audience members.
As the weather began to calm, so arrived the final performance of Cuckoo’s Nest, and a packed house witnessed the end of a beautiful piece of art, from the stunning set built by the very talented technicians of the Central High School Theatre Department to the jaw-dropping performance by the cast. It seems evident that this show will go down in Central High Theatre’s record book as being one of the best.