One for all and all for the Three Musketeers

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One for all and all for the Three Musketeers

The cast of The Three Musketeers after their first performance of the show.

The cast of The Three Musketeers after their first performance of the show.

Mary Dowling '22.

The cast of The Three Musketeers after their first performance of the show.

Mary Dowling '22.

Mary Dowling '22.

The cast of The Three Musketeers after their first performance of the show.

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Heroism, comedy, romance, political intrigue, and swashbuckling rescues came alive on the stage of the Lennie de Csepel Theater November 22 and November 23.  Under the direction of Miss Michaela Gorman ’05 Upper School Drama Teacher and Director of Drama Productions, Sacred Heart Greenwich Upper School students performed two shows of Ken Ludwig’s The Three Musketeers.  Samuel French, Inc. Concord Theatricals Company specially arranged this play adaption of The Three Musketeers.

The story, set in 1625, begins with D’Artagnan, played by senior Caitlyn Mitchell, who sets off for Paris, France with his sister Sabine, played by senior Cassidy Willie-Lawes, in hopes of fulfilling his lifelong dream of becoming a musketeer.  Soon after reaching Paris, D’Artagnan encounters Athos, played by junior Piper Gilbert, Porthos, played by senior Zada Brown, and Aramis, played by senior Michaela Pond.

The play follows the adventures of D’Artagnan and the three musketeers’ adventures fighting against Cardinal Richelieu, played by sophomore Isabel Lehrman, and Milady de Winter, played by senior Rachael Ali.  Serving as the main villain of the play, the convincing evil performance of Isabel impressed the audience through her own adaptation of the character.

Isabel Lehrman ’22, as Cardinal Richelieu, stands at odds with the King of France, Emma Pope ’21. Mary Dowling ’22.

Mrs. Anne Uglum, Upper School Math and Science Teacher enjoyed Isabel’s comedic yet evil performance, as her character’s plan gets continuously foiled by the three musketeers.

“I think the character that stood out to me the most was Cardinal Richelieu.  In the book, the character is more militaristic and less conniving,” Mrs. Uglum said.  “I loved how Isabel Lehrman interpreted this character.  She added just the right amount of deviousness and smarm to make him a thoroughly despicable villain without going over the top.”

The members of the cast and crew repeated the mantra  “all for one and one for all.”  This quote mirrors the teamwork among the cast and showed their ability to work together through the sword fighting choreography. 

It was senior Zada’s first time doing choreography with a sword, and she anxiously awaited the opportunity to fight in the scenes.  

“We were fighting very slowly when rehearsal began, and we all had trouble memorizing our beats.  However, after weeks of practice, we gradually started to increase our speed and eventually, add intensity and sounds,” Zada said.  “I loved the process and I am very proud of how scary the fights looked in the actual performance.”

Caitlyn Mitchell ’20, as D’Artagnan, sword fights with one of the kings guards Molly Kriskey ’23. Mary Dowling ’22

The set design of the show was intricate and detailed.  Miss Gorman used set pieces covered in copies of The Three Musketeers and portrayed actors as writers within the scenes in order to fully portray a storybook coming to life.

Zada admires the creativity Miss Gorman brings to each production.  Whether it is a classic or contemporary piece, Miss Gorman makes the play her own through the imaginative costumes and set design.

“The idea of a storybook coming to life was one that everyone was excited about when we heard it at our first rehearsal.  However, I do not think anyone was prepared to see how Miss Gorman’s vision was going to come to life in the final product,” Zada said.  “I was amazed when I saw the set all together for the first time.  It was like nothing I had ever seen before.  It was simple, unique, and it captured our concept perfectly.  It took a very long time to actually cover all of the set pieces in different pages from copies of The Three Musketeers, but the end product was entirely worth the time spent.”

The audience all seemed to connect with the show, especially the comedic elements that each individual character brought to the stage.  Upper School English Teacher  Dr. Cristina Baptista shared one of her many favorite moments of the play, and the atmosphere of the show.

“When it was mentioned that the endangered Sabine attended a Convent of the Sacred Heart school, the audience was in stitches,” Dr. Baptista said.  “One of the best parts about live theatre is seeing to what an audience will connect, or marveling at how something serious can be taken humorously—and rather unexpectedly.  Not a single performance is ever repeated, as an audience will always bring different energy and perspective.”

The skilled involvement of students from the cast and crew impressed Dr. Baptista. Each year, she recognizes the hard work that Ms. Gorman and her cast put into the show.

“There are sound-effects and transitions to consider; blocking to be planned, instructed, and learned; costuming and props to procure and perfect,” Dr. Baptista said.  “There is no going back once you’re on stage and the audience is watching.  And in its rawness and veritable vulnerability lies the key to empathy and connection.  With the audience only a small distance away from the unfolding story, it is easy to feel invested and immersed from the get go—when the production is of quality and acting top-notch. Fortunately, we have such quality and skill at our school.”

Featured image by Mary Dowling ’22