WOOLWICH TWP. — The Kingsway Regional High School Theater Department cordially invites the entire community to a special free preview of The Outsiders on Nov. 3 in the Kingsway Regional High School Eitel Theater at 10 a.m. during the Crafts’ Fair.
A young adult classic by SE Hinton and adapted for the stage by Christopher Sergel, The Outsiders is a timeless coming of age tale in the face of hatred, indifference, marginalization, and isolation.
The main character, Ponyboy Curtis, played by sophomore Michael Alberta, recounts the defining events in his life as a Greaser, a derogatory term for disadvantaged youth in 1964 Oklahoma. Throughout the story, an inseparable gang of greasers navigate their way through class conflict, violence, rejection, and death, in a search for hope, reconciliation, redemption, understanding, acceptance, and love.
In the novel, the greaser gang are all male, but Kingsway director, Andrew Young, took a different approach in his casting of The Outsiders. Some of the roles, traditionally male, have been re-imagined and cast with female counterparts. Young believed that such an important play should be semi-adapted to fit a modern audience.
“I just wanted to give all deserving drama students a chance to grow as actors in challenging roles,” recalled Young. “But when I mentioned that I was considering Outsiders, the response of the students was overwhelmingly enthusiastic, I just knew we had to produce the play because of their emotional connection to the novel.”
Junior Erin Highland, cast as Dallas “Dally” Winston, believes that “the core themes of this play have no gender bias, and will deeply resonate with anyone who watches it. I appreciate Mr. Young recognizing how relevant this story is to young women, as well as young men.”
The Company of The Outsiders fully recognize how important it is to tell this story in today’s society. Senior, Lydia Riddell, cast as Johnny Cade, stated, “Kingsway doing a play as influential as The Outsiders is really inspiring because so many kids and adults can relate to the social issues. This production will have a positive impact on everyone who sees it.”
A Q&A with cast, crew, and audience will follow the preview. The Outsiders premieres at KRHS on Dec. 6 and will run Dec. 7 and 8 for four performances.
Audiences are advised that scenes of mild violence will be depicted on the stage. These scenes were choreographed by professional stage combat instructor, Jacqueline Holloway, to ensure student safety and be true to the themes of The Outsiders.