The Milford High School Drama Club will feature their first of three shows this year for the Milford community this weekend. Audience members will have the opportunity to see high school drama enthusiasts perform Cheaper by the Dozen, a comedy that depicts a father’s desire to run his family of twelve as efficiently as the factories he is trained to operate.
Based on the classic 1948 book by Frank B. Gilbreth, Jr. and Ernestine Gilbreth Carey, Cheaper by the Dozen is the true story of a large, loving, and laughable family with many of the same quirks and problems of today’s modern families. Mr. Gilbreth and Mrs. Gilbreth do not always see eye to eye with their children, particularly rebellious teenage daughter Anne. Dad’s ideas, while well-intentioned, do not always work out the way he had planned and, as with all families, there is even more going on beneath the surface.
According to Director Carissa Meiklejohn, there is something in this story for everyone. “I chose to do this play because the novel was a favorite of mine, and it is a nice blend of humor and wholesomeness. Students can connect with the themes of pressure from parents and dealing with siblings. Adults will enjoy Mr. Gilbreth’s unorthodox way of raising his family.”
A Director of the Milford High School performances for ten years, Meiklejohn found this particular script to be challenging for the students as they learned the dynamics of the family on stage.
“It has been very interesting to see them discover each character and how they fit into the larger family,” commented Meiklejohn. “I can see that they had a breakthrough this week and it is really fun watching them interact with each other as they understand their role together.”
Main character of the play Frank Gilberth, played by Nathan Benton, is the patriarch of the family as he leads them in every aspect of family life. Lining the children up for what appears to be more of an army drill than housework, Frank has an underlying reason to why he wants the family to be more efficient and save time.
“I like how snappy my character is around his children and also how he reacts when one of them stands up to him,” commented Benton. “My favorite part of the performance has to be when Frank pulls out his whistle and expects a family lineup.” This year is Nathan’s first year acting on stage as he has worked for the stage crew for the past three years.
Rebellious daughter Anne, played by Tara Holstein, questions her father’s reasoning on several occasions and begins to catch on to why he demands such unusual methods by the end of the play.
“Anne has been a difficult part for me to play because she is so different from my own personality. It has been a challenge and I am enjoying it,” commented Tara. “I like how Anne tries to be a rebel and how she can influence her younger sisters.” This will be Tara’s third year in the MHS Drama Club as she has acted in performances including Suessical and Snow White.
Other featured cast and crew members from Milford High School include Jessica Creigh, Ethan Dehel, Tyler Dehel, Ciera Emich, Alex Frketic, Shannon Hollingsworth, Rhea Lajeunesse, Christina McTheny, Stephanie Miller, Nicole Rogers, Gabrielle Romero, Abigail Roxby and Alison VanVorst.
Performances will be held in the Milford High School Auditorium on Thursday, November 14; Friday, November 15; and Saturday, November 16. All three evening shows will begin at 7:00 p.m. There will also be an afternoon matinee on Saturday, November 16 at 1:00 p.m. Tickets will be available at the door. Adults $7; Students and Senior Citizens $5. For additional information, individuals can contact Producer Erica Snyder at 302-422-1610 or firstname.lastname@example.org