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This year’s Cedar Catholic one-act play features high drama

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HARTINGTON — Cedar Catholic’s One Act this year is a serious play that packs a powerful message.

The play, “Jackboy” by Ken Bradbury features Alex Christensen as Jackboy who is taunted by the ghost Marleybone (Ben Kleinschmit) and his shadows (Meredith McGregor, Melayna McGregor, Anneliese Kleinschmit, Lydia Herbolsheimer and Bailey Hochstein). Jackboy feels the need to take down this ghost in order to prove he isn’t a curse.

The plot is a complex storyline, dealing with heavy topics such as falling to fear and the desire for self validation, said senior Grace Kleinschmit.

“One time after practice, Adam Pinkleman (one-act assistant coach) explained to us that this play is a really great example of not letting fear take control of our lives,” she said. “By letting fear take control of our lives, we lose track of the good things and blessings in life and get lost in our own selves. I thought it was so cool that he was able to put that together and that we can speak a powerful message through our actions.”

The script is a good fit for the 37 student actors to challenge themselves but also let loose and have fun, Kleinschmit said.

The play’s crew is 25 students strong and they’ve worked diligently on creating a swamp set as well as a church one. Costumes consist of bib overalls, skirts and plaid clothing, said Audrey Freeman, this year’s Cedar Catholic One Act coach.

Kleinschmit plays Jenny, Jackboy’s girlfriend.

“She likes to come off tough since her childhood was rough but she always has the right intentions. She loves fiercely and only wants the best for Jack, which is why she sticks by his side through the good and bad. I really love this part because of the range of emotions I get to show,” said Kleinschmit.

Audiences will appreciate the high level of drama and emotions at the play’s climax, she said.

“You can feel it in the air that things are going down and it leaves you on the edge of your seat, wanting to know what happens next,” Kleinschmit said.

Students competed in conference in Norfolk this week and head to Lyons-Decatur Nov. 30 for districts.

“We went for a serious play this year for something different,” Freeman said. “We are so blessed to have a new assistant Adam Pinkelman who has been a godsend of talent. Hopefully those factors will put us on top.”

“I believe we have the power to achieve great things in competition, we just need to focus, work together, and trust that the Lord will help us through it, Kleinschmit said. “Mrs. Freeman and Adam Pinkleman deserve a huge shoutout for all the time they’ve put into helping us be the best we can be. They really are great at what they do and make this experience so enjoyable.”

A public performance is tentatively set for Sunday, Nov. 27.

Kleinschmit said she has been playing opposite of Christensen for the last three seasons and it’s fun to see how far they’ve come as they take on different roles. And it’s bittersweet that her time in one-act is coming to an end.

“I wouldn’t trade those four years for anything. CCHS One Act has stolen a big part of my heart and I’m very thankful for the experiences it has given me,” she said.