“Glass Menagerie” performance benefits students

October 17, 2010 — by Ashley Tang

Four professional actors from The San Jose Repertoire presented a live performance of “The Glass Menagerie,” a play written by Tennessee Williams, on Oct. 5 in the McAfee Center. English 11 Honors students were encouraged to watch the play during second period, although students of all grades were invited.

“The Glass Menagerie” fit in perfectly with the juniors’ English curriculum, and students had the chance to read the play before watching it live.

“I thought watching ‘The Glass Menagerie’ after I read it really made a difference because I knew what was happening,” said junior Varsha Ramesh. “The play was really well produced.”

Teachers are also grateful for a chance to show students the difference between watching a play live and reading it in a book.

“Seeing ‘The Glass Menagerie’ performed onstage helps us understand the play, and it’s also great for thinking about any live performance,” said English teacher Suzanne Herzman. “Plays weren’t meant to be read; they were meant to be performed.”

Both teachers and students treasured this enriching experience, especially with the active participation of the audience.

“I think it’s such a great opportunity to see any live theater, and it was really a lot of fun. It made me proud to be at Saratoga High when I saw how the audience members really allowed themselves to get involved in the play,” said Herzman.

Although students also greatly enjoyed the play, some were surprised that the actors were not like what they had imagined.

“I thought the actors did a good job, but it was still kind of awkward for me because they didn’t represent [the characters in the play] as I imagined they would,” said Ramesh.

After the performance, the actors held a workshop for students in the drama classes. They shared tips and critiqued students while they went through a few acting exercises.

“I think it was a good experience for the newer, younger drama students, but I wish they had been a little more respectful because we don’t get guests very often, so I think we should take more advantage of that,” said senior Jay Lee. “However, it was nice of the actors to spend time with us and to give us some advice.”

1 view this week