Theatre Information

McCluer High School The Diviners

By • Apr 16th, 2012 • Category: Cappies, Missouri

When faced with tragedy, perhaps one of the hardest things to do is to keep going. McCluer High School’s play The Diviners shows the great possibilities that can come up when facing heart breaking problems together as a group.

The Diviners was written by Jim Leonard and based in the very beginning of the Great Depression era. The play takes place into a rural town near the Appalachian Mountains, with a population of around 40. In the very beginning, the viewer finds out that Buddy Layman, a young boy with a knack of finding water, passes away. The play then leads the viewer of the story showing the days before Buddy’s death.

The lead characters, along with rest of the cast, had a strong idea of how each of their characters should be and never broke character. Cornelius Barnes, who plays Buddy, did a phenomenal job of creating such a lovable character from the beginning. Barnes could have easily gone over the top with a character like Buddy, but did not. From his body movements to his sly grin Barnes truly captured what Buddy Layman was all about, innocence. Elvony Pleasant, who plays Buddy’s older sister Jennie Mae, also did a tremendous job of portraying a young girl forced to grow up after her mother passes away.

Lavalle Moore, who plays C.C. Showers, a preacher who comes into the town looking for work, showed infectious energy the entire show. Moore’s genuine acting gave C.C. a friendly and caring twist throughout the show. Jade Hillery, who plays Norma Henshaw, a shop owner who hopes C.C. can bring church and God back into the town, added a great comic relief throughout the show. Overall the entire cast showed a great amount of chemistry between each other. One cast member never outshined the others. A great example of this is at the end when the entire cast sings “Amazing Grace” after Buddy dies. The emotion from every single member was the most amazing and heartbreaking part of the entire show.

The costumes of each of the characters seemed to be well thought out from the tears in Buddy’s overalls to the dirt smeared across many of the men’s clothes. The team work between the sound and lighting was extremely tight most of the time especially in the ending scene. The set was also an interesting twist with the quilt draped across the stage.

Overall, like many shows, this one had a few minor flaws. At times some of the characters lacked energy in scenes and there were some slip ups on lines. There were also some technical problems relating to the sound and lighting.

Taking in account all of the difficulties this talented cast and crew has had to face, McCluer High School put together possibly one of the most professional shows seen this year.

by Desirae Eagle of Pattonville

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