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The Ice Wolf — East Central High, Minnesota

Business AudienceYou’re probably used to cheering on a school team in sports. Today we’re cheering for some actors as they advance to State finals for one act plays.

East Central High in Minnesota impressed the judges big time as they performed in the play that garnered them first place at the Section 7A Minnesota State High School League One-Act Play competition on Saturday, February 7, 2015. EVERY judge awarded them first place honors. That’s rare and commendable.

The play they chose is impressive. Although I haven’t seen it (wish I could see their performance!) what I’ve read makes me say “Wow!” (Just like the judges who saw them on Saturday.) The Ice Wolf  is a tale, set long ago, of an Inuit girl who, unlike everyone around her, has light hair. This is seen by her community, who believe strongly in shamans and spirits, as a sign that she is evil — she is shunned and cast out. In despair, she goes into the forest, a place where no one ventures, and pleads to be turned into a wolf.

This sounds like a powerful look at racism and prejudice of all kinds. It must be an incredible experience to see it enacted. The judges who saw the East Central kids perform the play certainly thought so. Their reactions, which are recorded on East Central’s website, included exclamations of “Wow!”  “phenomenal,” “dynamite,” “gorgeous costumes . . . fabulous scenery,” “extraordinary work,” “absolutely amazing . . . brilliant, engaging, and powerful,” “a two-hankie production.”

You can see another theatre, Imagination Stage in Bethesda, Maryland, in a short excerpt from The Ice Wolf  at this link. It will give you some idea of the impact of the play.

East Central performs in the State competition tomorrow, Thursday February 12. Let’s wish them all a good show. Break a leg, kids!

***Edited on February 18 to add that the kids did very well! Congratulations, East Central!

From their website: East Central’s play The Ice Wolf by Joanna H. Kraus was awarded top honors, receiving a “starred performance” rating from all three judges.  Among the judges’ comments concerning the students’ performance of The Ice Wolf were statements such as “gorgeous,” “remarkable,” “deeply felt,” “beautiful,” “absolutely stunning,” “a feast for the eyes,” “mysterious,” “eerie and horrifying,” “captivating,” “exceptional,” “very polished and heartfelt,” “awesome,” “clever and precise,” “really touching,” “flawless,” “amazing,” “riveting,” “a picture book come to life,” “authentic and respectful production,” and “Wow!”

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