Hilliard Bradley High School drama students weren't sure how they would get a fall production off the ground when they learned on the first day of class in August that the department had no technical director.
But with help from Darby High School, the show at Bradley will go on.
Luke Bovenizer, theater director at Bradley, credits Ed Daniel, the technical director at Darby High School, for marshaling the assistance required.
"We couldn't have done the show without them," Bovenizer said. "All of the actors and crew are Bradley students, but the Darby students gave up their time after school and on the weekends to construct and paint the set with Bradley kids.
"It has been a wonderfully collaborative and educational experience for all involved."
For Bradley's fall production, Bovenizer selected Black Comedy by English playwright Sir Peter Levin Shaffer.
Bovenizer said he chose the little-known play based on its fast-paced slapstick humor.
Bradley's performance includes one in-school show and two public performances at 7 p.m. Friday, Sept. 27 and Saturday, Sept. 28.
"Because it was an in-school play, I wanted to do something that would keep everyone's attention," Bovenizer said. "There is a lot of tripping, falling, and people running into each other."
The play also features a reversed lighting scheme.
The play opens on a darkened stage, but a few minutes later, the stage is lit and the audience learns a circuit has been blown.
The audience is to understand that as the actors trip, fall and flail, they are acting as if they are in a pitch-dark room, Bovenizer said.
"The first two minutes are played in pitch black while the audience hears regular conversation, but when a fuse blows, the stage lights come on and we see the actors as if they were in the dark," Bovenizer said. "When a match is struck, the lights dim; when it is blown out, the stage brightens. I think the audience will get a kick out of it."
Sophomore Ian Bell is cast as Brindsley Miller, a struggling artist, and senior Taylor Hayes as his fiancee, Carol Melkett.
The supporting cast includes senior Alayna Hanson as Miss Furnival, senior Joey Glick as Colonel Melkett, senior Shane Haney as Harold Gorringe, sophomore McKenna Michel as Clea, senior Chad Cook as Shuppanzigh and senior Jack Casey as George Bamberger.
The show is about 80 minutes with no intermission.
Tickets are $5. The Sept. 27 and 28 shows are at Bradley's performing arts center, 2800 Walker Road.