Hilliard Northwest News

Darby students to stage Moon Over Buffalo this weekend

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Seniors Danni Hepp and Geoffrey Gear will play the lead roles of Charlotte and George Hay in Hilliard Darby High School's winter production of Moon Over Buffalo .

A stage comedy that centers on a theater troupe will be the subject of Hilliard Darby High School's winter production.

Darby students will present Moon Over Buffalo by Ken Ludwig at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 31, and Saturday, Feb. 1, at the high school, 4200 Leppert Road.

Tickets are $5 and will be available at the door.

Director Justin Gates said he chose the play because of the success and enjoyment he experienced at Darby with another Ludwig farce, Lend Me a Tenor.

Set in Buffalo, N.Y., in 1953, Gates said, Moon Over Buffalo not only gives the actors a comedic experience, but also provides an educational opportunity.

Gates, a history teacher at Darby, said he uses scripts set in the past as an opportunity to teach students about context.

"I think it helps them (as actors) to know what the world was like and what was happening in the world around them at the time in which the play is set," Gates said.

Moon Over Buffalo focuses on George and Charlotte Hay, a couple performing in a repertory theater who have a falling out because of an affair. Mistaken identities also factor into the plot.

"It becomes quite chaotic," Gates said.

Senior Geoffrey Gear will portray George Hay and senior Danni Hepp will play Charlotte Hay.

"There is a lot of misadventure," said Gear, who described his character as "arrogant."

"He thinks bad things just won't happen to him, but they do," Gear said.

Hepp describes her character, Charlotte, as "ridiculously stubborn."

Playing Charlotte is not a huge stretch, though, Hepp said.

"I think I'm a lot like her already, but I have to amp it up a little to get in her role," Hepp said. "The rest is pretty natural."

Gear said he is considering continuing theater in college.

Hepp already has auditioned for the theater department at Wright State University and also is considering Otterbein University.

Rounding out the cast of Moon Over Buffalo will be Rachel Kijowski as Roz; Preston Lawrence as Howard; Steven Trimboli as Paul; Jessie Strait as Ethel; Chris Anderson as Richard; and Abby Connell as Eileen.