Hailey Kuang / Staff reporter
Students will perform Sending Down the Sparrows by Laura Lundgren Smith during MetFest, the annual district-wide drama competition, at Heritage Woods Secondary on November 29.
This year’s show Sending Down the Sparrows is directed by Justin Maller, drama teacher, and features Ki-seon Peck and Payton Dembicki, both grade 12, who play the twin siblings Viktor and Alina respectively.
Students may know the history of Nazi Germany and the crimes they have committed against Jews such as sending them to death camps and gas chambers. Fewer students know about the mentally and physically handicapped people who often faced mistreatment and eventually death by gassing as well.
Sending Down the Sparrows takes place in Nazi Germany during 1939. It follows Viktor, a member of the Hitler Youth who begins to question Nazi ideology, and Alina, Viktor’s mentally handicapped sister, who faces mistreatment in the facility she stays in.
For many in the cast, this is quite different from the light-hearted shows done in the past. “The show is very emotionally draining for me, especially since this is my first time tackling such a serious show,” said Peck. “Going from many comedic shows to a play about Nazism isn’t the most gradual transition.”
Despite the heavier topic, Elyjah Del Bianco, grade 12, thinks the topic is important. “It is an important story to be told. The story here tragic and brutal… [but] offers quite a challenge to an actor. For example, Karl,” played by Bianco, “is more than just a Nazi bully, he speaks what he truly believes is right.” He continued by saying, “Figuring out exactly how to play him… is difficult in all the best ways.”
Students can see Sending Down the Sparrows at Heritage Woods Secondary on November 29. Doors open at 6:30 pm and the show starts at 7 pm; tickets will be $5 per person.