The Chocolate Factory moves to NPHS

Charlie Bucket, the nine-year-old boy, walks on stage wearing his overalls and knee-high socks as he braces himself for a tour that no one could have imagined. Lights on, curtains lifted, the play begins.

The spring play, “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” was successfully showcased in the PAC. A production consisting of around 30 actors started rehearsal at the beginning of March and had their opening show on May 10.

Charles Ocampo, senior, played the role of Charlie Bucket. This is Ocampo’s fifth main stage show at NPHS. In order to better act as a nine-year-old, Ocampo gains inspiration from his past experiences with children.

“I have worked in Chuck E’ Cheese and I am tutoring little kids right now. I wanted to portray my character as a nine year old through the kids I take care of and the kids that I tutor at work. So I just try and embody the characteristics they have and put myself in my nine-year-old shoes,” Ocampo said.

The story takes place in Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory where five children are taken on a tour. To better act out the characters, the actors used many ways to bring them back to their childhood selves. During blocking rehearsal, students took the time to play some childhood games.

“We would actually play a little game such as charades or duck duck goose, some kind of childhood game like that to make us get into the mood of a child. It was really fun,” Ocampo said.   

There are always actors that have something to struggle with in any production. The amount of work put into their struggles helped them achieve flawlessness for their performances. Aspen Roos, freshman, played Veruca Salt, one of the golden ticket winners.

“The challenge I faced was throwing a fit. I knew I needed to put all of myself out there and really just dive into the character. I was embarrassed at first, but it turned out to be really fun and helped me develop as an actress,” Roos said.

Preparing a play is a lot of work. From running lines, being able to put their shoes in the characters’ and really, at the end of things, enjoying the play. The actors and actresses worked constantly to bring this play to a presentable condition.

All the actors and actresses had to use much of their day in preparation for “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory”. Joah Ditto, freshman, had participated in all of the major school plays this school year, and had encountered many long days and nights prepare for these major productions.

“(Since March) The cast took a few hours out of their day, everyday, except for Tuesdays, to rehearse the play, and/or learn new blocking for scenes,” Ditto said. “There were two hours of rehearsal every weekday excluding Tuesdays. There was a week of rehearsals that didn’t include the weekends, called “tech week.” This is done for every single show in the theatre world. In tech week, the actors were called from 3:30 p.m. until whenever Mrs. Strange needed us.”

The annual spring play is always an opportunity for students who love theatre to find a time to enjoy themselves. From actors, directors, technicians to costume designers, their time and hardwork is what makes the show enjoyable to them and their audience.

“My favorite part of the show was the collaboration of every person to create such an energetic and fun show,” Ditto said. “That is something I will always love about the community that the NPHS theatre provides.”

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