Hannah King is years past her glory days during the Golden Age of Hollywood when she travels to Italy with her entourage for a starring role in a new film. But comedy and a love triangle ensues when her Italian director falls for her and her estranged husband follows her to Rome.
Redondo Union High School Theatre Arts presents the play “In Any Language,” the satire on Italian movie making beginning Thursday, Dec. 6, at the high school's auditorium, located at 1 Seahawk Way.
“In Any Language” has been produced rarely since it was on Broadway for only 45 performances in late 1952, but Theatre Arts Director Melissa Staab wanted to stage a comedy for their fall production after producing a Holocaust drama last year.
“I was literally laughing out loud in my living room and I was like, this is a good sign,” Staab said. “I could see our students taking it on and bringing to life. I loved the character of Hannah, she's really funny, stereotypical actress, very diva, very dramatic.”
Junior Brianna Baker said she's enjoyed pushing herself outside her comfort zone with Hannah's over-the-top personality, the physical slapstick comedy and tackling a little Italian.
“It's a very big character with a lot of different personalities,” Baker said. “It's been really fun to explore the different sides of the character that I'm playing as well as trying to incorporate physicality and the inflections in my voice and really pushing myself and trying to do something new with comedy.”
Two teachers on campus who speak fluent Italian helped the students with their pronunciation and dialect. There will be a screen with subtitles so the audience can follow along.
For senior Max Gorman, who plays director Aldo Carmenelli, speaking Italian was one of the biggest challenges of the play. But it was also fun tackling the over-the-top humor and characters.
“Everyone is almost a parody of a real life person,” Gorman said. “I'm a parody of the sleazy director, she's the parody of a dumb American actress... we get to have so much fun with all of this because everything is just so weird.”
Approximately 30 of the Redondo Union drama students will be traveling to New York during Spring Break to attend four Broadway productions as well as to participate in master classes.
According to Staab, students designed and built the stage and for the first time the lighting design in the auditorium was done by students.
“In Any Language” takes place December 6, 7 and 8, at 7 pm., and Sunday, Dec. 9, at 2 p.m.
For more information, visit ruhsdrama.com.