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Framingham High Stages Bilingual Tragedy

Framingham High's entry in the preliminary round of the Massachusetts Drama Festival is the 1930s Spanish play Blood Wedding.

Not one to shy away from difficult issues, Director chose the Spanish tragedy Bodas de Sangre by Federico Garcia Lorca for the high school's entry into the Massachusetts Drama Festival this weekend.

The High School Drama Company will stage Blood Wedding - a bilingual interpretation of the original play, written in 1932, tomorrow night (March 4) at 7 p.m. for the public. Tickets are $10.

The play, written by Lorca, was based on a newspaper article he read about a woman who ran away with her former lover on her wedding day.

The play, interpreted by Framingham High, tells the tale of a bride torn between two lovers and a mother's loss for her sons.

High school student Lauren Stockless has the difficult role of La Madre (the mother) Stockless, during a rehearsal switched between English and Spanish lines effortlessly.

The fludity of the original language of the play combined with translation issues, Wresinski has the students performing the play in not one language but a combination of two languages - English and Spanish.

This may have been difficult for some high schools, but not Framingham, in which some students are native Spanish speakers and some students have been learning Spanish since kindergarten.

It is a powerful and emotional performance. Sex and violence are part of the production, so the performance is for mature audiences.

Chloe Kounadis tackles the role of la novia (the bride) beautifully. Philip da Costa (groom) and Harry Meltzer portray her two lovers. 

The staging is filled with light and dark imagery, including the performances of the light of the moon (Mike Russo) and the darkness of the angel of death (Kiana Woodsom). 

In recent years, Framingham High has performed well at the Massachusetts Drama Festival.

This year, Framingham High is one of 14 hosts sites for the preliminary round Saturday. Three schools from each host site will move on to the semifinal round.

On Saturday, March 5, eight high school productions will compete at Framingham High, including the host. The others are: Billerica High, David Prouty High, Burncoat High, Minnechaug Regional High, Boston Latin High, Malden Catholic High and Beaver Country Day School.

Framingham takes to the stage at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday. Billerica High opens with Body of Faith at 9 a.m. and Beaver Country Day will close out the day at 5:30 p.m. with a staging of Little Women.

Jim Rizoli March 04, 2011 at 02:11 AM
Jim Rizoli from CCFIILE.COM said Quote..."It is a powerful and emotional performance. Sex and violence are part of the production, so the performance is for mature audiences". Just what we need more violence and sex in the school. What are you people thinking? And you wonder why they act they way they they do on the buses and in the classrooms. Why don't you present a play that deals with issues that teach morals, and positive human thinking. I look at it this way.....The kids are what they watch and act. It's bad enough they are surrounded by this stuff at home, now they get a double dose in school. If I ran the school Dept this women would be fired. But she has convinced the school her warped entertainment is what the kids need. If you wouldn't send your mother and children to see the play why would it be good for the adult kids. What's next, gay and lesbian sex, adultery, pornography, prostitution? Just because the topics are out there doesn't give her the right top present them. You parents should be incensed!
Donald Wendt March 04, 2011 at 02:41 AM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood_Wedding_(play) Doesn't appear to contain any more sex and violence than other plays, like "Romeo and Juliet", that has also been performed in High Schools.
Susan Petroni (Editor) March 04, 2011 at 02:48 AM
@Jim -- No more violence and sex than found in many a play by Shakespeare. Would you ban Shakespeare too?
Jim Rizoli March 04, 2011 at 03:19 AM
Jim Rizoli from CCFIILE.COM said.... Good point! Here is the deal, I didn't see the play, the quote came from you, so I depended on you for your expert opinion. When you said "Sex and violence" I say Oh, more sex and violence, just what we need! What you should of wrote is what you said to me here. Words can be taken a different way, so that's the way I took it. I hope you can see where I'm coming from here. My apologies if it's not as graphic or violent as the ones mentioned, just responding to what I read. Sometimes words by the writers emit different emotional feelings to those reading. When you show me what your true intention was as you did here, then I will respond accordingly, like I did Fair enough? Sue, your a good writer so don't take this the wrong way.
Joe Rizoli March 04, 2011 at 05:31 AM
Joe Rizoli States: Donna Wresinsk plays are a good example of the moral direction this country is heading by giving us plays about drug addicted, bi-sexual mentally disturbed individuals such a The Laremie Project. The high school students are game for more of Miss Wresinski's antics by now having a play in two languages, and NOT for children but MATURE audiences, thus proving that diversity is alive and well in Framingham under the covers. I really don't agree with this that FAMILY'S should be prevented by seeing ANYTHING at the high school. This sends a bad message. A lot of these kids in the play come from FAMILIES with younger children that probably as a FAMILY would love to see a play. To have this restriction to see this play to me is NOT a good idea. Plays should be FAMILY events open to all. How the school could allow this bothers me. I have no problem with plays that teach a moral lesson but for some reason Framingham seems to be heading in the wrong direction. BUT....no matter, I think the plays teach the kids discipline and stage presence in front of audiences, maybe some will become politicians because of this, hehehehehe Joe Rizoli CCFIILE.com CCFIILE@gmail.com
Bob Berman March 04, 2011 at 11:33 AM
Morality lessons from the Rizoli brother's, very useful. Donna does a fantastic job of pushing the envelope, one of the most important lessons a young artist can have. I again will say that we are very lucky to have her. Other's might miss the year in, year out standby's we had in the 80's like Oklahoma and Carousel, but I greatly appreciate the variety of standout productions that the school has been offering.
RMichael Wresinski March 04, 2011 at 12:55 PM
Joe says "Donna Wresinski's plays..." as though he has actually seen the plays. I'd like to know which one he's seen. Especially when he writes about the decaying moral fiber of our country. He must have been talking about the past productions like "Seusical", "You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown", "Godspell", "The Sound of Music"... The next thing you know, she'll be doing that play about the two men who live together and drink and smoke and gamble throughout. You know, that morally destructive play, "The Odd Couple"! And to Jim: who says these plays don't teach moral values? You've got to show what's wrong in order to determine what's right. In the case of this EIGHTY YEAR OLD PLAY we have a number of moral dilemas that must be dealt with. How the characters go about solving them is the lesson. And as far as your being in charge and firing the teacher... thankfully, you're NOT in charge. I would hate to think you made decisions like this based on hearsay and a brief article in the newspaper. It's a good thing you're not in a position of political clout making decisions about important town issues without investigating the full story! By the way, when are the upcoming elections?
Susin Carlson March 04, 2011 at 01:45 PM
I can't wait to see it! I'm thrilled that we have a Director who is brave enough to take on all facets of theater, it gives a wider and deeper education to the students and those who attend! Now, I may be biased as she's a friend and I think she's brilliant..but really, isn't theater supposed to open your mind and give you a new perspective on lifes lessons? For Jim/Joe...I find it interesting that you're so horrified by the subject matter yet couldn't wait to saddle up next to a woman who's cult teaches their children to hold up signs depicting sex acts before they reach middle school....
Susan Petroni (Editor) March 04, 2011 at 01:58 PM
@Jim - writing is interpretive, like art, dance and theatre. So, I should clarify my mature audience comment. If it was a movie I'd say PG-13. The violence and sex is no worse than Shakespeare and West Side Story, which I believe is the high school's next production. As a parent, I wanted to let other parents know about the content. Personally, from what I saw it is a fabulous production and I would recommend it!
Anonymous March 04, 2011 at 02:01 PM
Mr. Rizoli's.... On your website there is a very shortsighted photo about 'What Will Sink Framingham.' Unfortunately, however, I believe it is people like you and your brother. I will not go any further, but it is clear that any teenager in this production is more educated than yourself; a fact that you will never believe or probably truly understand, and that is the saddest thing of all. You can sit in front of a computer screen as much as you like and type your (tiny) hearts out with poor spelling and grammar (most kids in this production, after all, know the difference between 'you're' and 'your') but it's absolutely laughable since your research on the Framingham High School Drama Company extends only as far as your nose. And, Jim, don't take this badly, but 'your' a very bad writer. As for us "wonder[ing] why they act they way they they do on the buses and in the classrooms," we really don't. Because the kids doing this play often have to run between National Honor's Society and Advanced Preparation classes and do so effortlessly to go onto 3+ hour rehearsals, then home to do their homework, and finally to sleep. Not only are they the very anti-definition of 'bad kids,' but do you really think those kids who 'act the way [THAT] they do' would really take the time out of their busy, drug addicted, days to go see a school play? ... I didn't think so. Have a pleasant weekend. Don't feed the trolls.
RMichael Wresinski March 04, 2011 at 02:18 PM
... and as far as Jimmy's comment about this "warped entertainment" I'm surprised that a theatrical dilettante such as he wouldn't know that this is a world-famous play from an internationally recognized playwright. There seems to be a divergence as to what Theatre is. Mssrs. Rizoli think that it's supposed to be some vanilla-flavored happy meal without any substance and instantly forgettable. Wresinski (by the way, it's MRS. Wresinski!) and the school administration think that the students and audiences should actually LEARN something from the experience. I would think that the Rizolis would be in favor of the educational experience. Performing a world-class play from an author who was persecuted and censored for his political views and ultimately shot for his beliefs can deepen our understanding of the human condition. This play explores passion (not sex) and hatred and the consequences of how it affects us. These are issues that are MATURE and are not suitable for young children.
John Pearson March 04, 2011 at 02:34 PM
Folks let's take our heads out of the sand. It's a safe bet most of the high school kids have seen PG-13 movies. They've taken sex ed. This play is likely lame to what they're exposed to everyday. We're not Mormons. Parents who teach their kids about sex early do them a far better service than those who don't discuss it. Kudos to the drama club for taking on something interesting. And for taking advantage of Framingham's tremendously diverse student population. We've got a great 2-way program. Look what our kids can do!
Jim Rizoli March 04, 2011 at 04:11 PM
Jim Rizoli from CCFIILE.COM said....Anonymous, my spelling sucks what can I say.....It's my keyboard LOL. At least I'm not ashamed to say who I am... By the way school plays should be open enough for all grades. This isn't TV. Enjoying the comebacks though....
Carrie Grove March 04, 2011 at 06:41 PM
I cannot wait to see the show tonight! I just know it will be a fantastic experience all around, as it always is. Thanks Mrs. Wresinski for all that you do for the students and the entire community. I am proud to say that two of my children currently go to Framingham High School and I also have a graduate of FHS. I don't have a child participating in the show tonight and I am still so excited to see this production!
Joe Rizoli March 04, 2011 at 07:22 PM
Joe Rizoli States: The PLAY is a SCHOOL PLAY. ALL members of a FAMILY unit from little ones to grandma should be able to see this play. COLLEGE is the place for these types of plays. Kids should be free to go to ANY school event. Stop this foolishness just because the Rizoli's have an opinion. As to the "Morality" comment that was just plain slander. I would suggest you Mr Berman cast the first Stone here because we try to live right. We aren't perfect by a long shot but your comment was not a good choice of words. Joe Rizoli CCFIILE.com
RMichael Wresinski March 04, 2011 at 07:44 PM
So, you're saying that the educational value of studying advanced material should be sacrificed so that the lowest common denominator can enjoy the play? In that case, let's go back to the above comment about Shakespeare. Should the students not perform these classic works because first graders cannot "enjoy" it? The language and plots would certainly be beyond the comprehension of most young people... not to mention many adults!!! Again, I say that these productions are as much about the further education and gratification of the high school students as it is about providing a fun night out for the family. If that's what you want, go to the circus or MacDonald's Playland where you don't have to put forward any mental effort. The plays by the Drama Company are not presented merely for the jollies of the town; they have some depth and weight to them, too. Also, a very important point is missed here. This play is presented for a state-wide competition. If they dumb down the script they haven't got a chance of moving on beyond the preliminary stage. After all, the Framingham Drama Company has appeared at the state finals six or seven times in the past 10 years and won states. I'd say they know what shows to pick.
RMichael Wresinski March 04, 2011 at 07:50 PM
AND you want to talk about sex and violence. Then stay away from Shakespeare! Let's see there are multiple plots where we have cross-dressing !!!! kings beheaded, inter-racial marriage, teenagers "spending the night" together, histories (talk about boring a young audience!), and let's not forget DONKEY SEDUCTION (Midsummer Night's Dream)!!!!!
John Pearson March 04, 2011 at 08:01 PM
I went to a high school basketball game this year. It was the last home game; the day they invited kids from the youth leagues. They gave them free t-shirts. It was nice. But someone wasn't thinking and they played music with offensive lyrics. Definitely 'MA'. Too bad. The play is different. It doesn't say anything about being 'suitable for the whole family'. I would assume it's a high school event and should be suitable for high school aged kids. PG-13. And it's intended to compete with plays from other schools. I think creativity and progressive themes are appropriate.
Carrie Grove March 04, 2011 at 08:55 PM
John, I completely agree. This is a high school play and the material is appropriate for high school aged children. Families with younger children should check out next week's production of the musical "Footloose" at Walsh Middle School, should be fun for most ages! : )

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