Slapstick at school: NK students perform Tartuffe

Farce by Moliere to open Friday night.

“POULSBO – Seduction, hypocrisy, slapstick and tall, floppy wigs will all appear at North Kitsap High School in a few days. And all this for only three dollars. The North Kitsap High School drama club will present Moliere’s comedy, Tartuffe, Nov. 3, 4, 10 and 11 at the North Kitsap Community Auditorium. Tartuffe, said drama teacher Sharon Ferguson. It’s Moliere’s satire on religious hypocrisy, Ferguson said on Monday. Behind her, students were practicing the scenes on stage. They were flopping on sofas, falling on their knees, and wailing in sympathy. The wealthy nobility is always his target, Ferguson continued. And false piety. His plays were always getting him in trouble with the Catholic Church. The play, Ferguson said, is a good one for the students to perform. I’m always looking for a play where we have meaty parts for a number of students, Ferguson said. Tartuffe, with twenty students winding up on stage and more helping put on the play, offered that opportunity. One of the lead players is Sean Mumford, who plays Tartuffe himself. Mumford, with strands of his wig falling across his eyes, is excited for the play to open, and happy that it gives him a chance to do something new. There’s a lot of slapstick, he said, which is more fun. It’s not just your usual talking heads. Gabe Smith agrees. Smith plays Orgon, a character always becoming enraged and breaking off into furious rants. And Smith loves the part. It takes a lot of energy from me, Smith said. He’s always getting mad and that takes energy.’ Junior Sylvie Davidson is in the play too. After playing Marian the Librarian in last year’s production of The Music Man, Davidson is glad to be playing a more spicy character, a character named Doerine. Im more used to playing sweet and innocent, Davidson said. I’m not sweet and innocent this time. I’m more sarcastic and wenchy. It’s new ground for me. The actors look forward to Friday, when the play will open. There’s so much tension and energy, Mumford said. I feed off the audience. If I don’t get a reaction, it gets kind of tough. Davidson said the opening and closing performances are the ones the actors look forward to most. On closing night, she said, You know you only have one more time to do the play, and you want to be good. On the reason people should come see the play, both Mumford and Davidson agreed with Smith: Because it’s funny, he said. Every performance will begin at 7 p.m. “