Junction City High School is offering a “A Penny for Your Thoughts” this weekend with its fall play.
“A Penny for Your Thoughts” is the name of the play students chose this year.
The production bears a resemblance to 2015 Disney Pixar film “Inside Out,” according to JCHS drama instructor Brian Hagemeister.
The main character, Penny, is followed around stage by her five “egos” — aspects of her personality who narrate her thoughts to the audience.
The story focuses on Penny, who overhears her boyfriend having a conversation that makes her believe he might be cheating on her — even though he actually intends to propose to her in the near future.
“I think it’s entertaining,” Hagemeister said. “It’s funny, it’s very comical. The story’s cool, the kids are great.”
There are a lot of newcomers to the stage in this show, he said.
Hagemeister hopes it will show the public that high school activities are more than just sporting events — the school also offers fine arts.
“This is what they do, and they’re quite good at it and we’re excited about it,” he said.
Though the show is G-rated, it features a lot of relationship drama and so may bore younger children. However, people of all ages are welcome and, according to Hagemeister, parents won’t likely find themselves having to explain anything questionable to their children if they choose to bring them to the show.
“(There’s) some I would call some of it like some little bit of ‘Shrek humor,’” he said. “You know, where it’s like for adults, and the adults will get it, the kids won’t get it. It’s just but for the most part, yeah, it’s it’s acceptable to any age.”
Junior Chloe Welsh plays the title character.
“my favorite thing about playing the character Penny is I’ve learned a lot of things about myself,” she said. “And it’s been a really awesome experience to work with lots of different kinds of people that I never get to be around that much at school and just to have a different chance to hang out with them and learn new things from Mr. (Hagemeister). This is my first show with him. So I’m learning new things from a different director. And that’s really cool, too.”
It has been a challenge for Welsh to memorize all her lines, she said, and dealing with nerves which may make her forget them.
This is her first time in a play, but not on stage at JCHS. Welsh has also taken part in a number of musicals.
Director Courtney Day, also a junior, is also experiencing a personal first with this show. This is her first time directing a production such as “A Penny for Your Thoughts.”
“I love it,” she said. “It’s really good. I like it better than acting actually.”
Day enjoys helping other participants make the show come together, she said.
“I’m a part of it in a different way than it would be actually acting in the show,” Day said. “But I guess I feel like I get to make a lot of difference.”
Assistant director Ana Adams said she has enjoyed watching everyone’s progress, as well.
“I believe they’ll be very magical on opening day,” she said.
Junior David Burris, who plays Penny’s boyfriend Matt, said the show has made him stretch himself as an actor. He said the character is very unlike him. Expressing emotion, he said, has been hard for him on stage.
“One of the things I do not like about him is the fact that he’s very vulnerable,” Burris said.
Hagemeister hopes to see a large audience at the show.
Play attendance, he said, has shrunk every year since he began teaching drama 30 years ago and he’d like to see a reversal of this trend.
This year, those who present their student IDs at the gate will receive free entry to the show. Senior citizens will also enter free of charge. Other tickets cost $5.
The show takes place Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m. at JCHS.