By: Carlos O’Ryan
This November, Hammond High School’s Theatre Department will be putting on These Shining Lives for its annual fall production.
Set in Ottawa, Illinois, during the 1920’s, These Shining Lives tells the true story of Catherine Donahue, a young mother and wife who begins working at the Radium Dial factory as her husband, Tom, does not make enough money to support their family on his own. Excited to hold her own job for once, Catherine quickly becomes close friends with her co-workers, Charlotte, Pearl, and Frances, and she finds that she excels in her work, painting watch faces on wrist and pocket watches, with glow-in-the-dark radium paint. Catherine has found her perfect life… until she starts to suspect that she is getting sick, and while her boss and the company doctors insist that nothing is wrong with her, she knows that something is fatally wrong.
Image Courtesy of Avery Moe and the Hammond High Theatre Department
A drama full of heart about sisterhood, marriage, and the abuse of workers by large corporations, These Shining Lives is sure to tug at heartstrings and start the waterworks. Rehearsals for the show began on the first week of school. Sarah Meklir, 11th grader, when asked about her experienced acting in the play thus far, was ecstatic: “It’s honestly such a great group, I love developing my character and being able to interact with everyone involved in the show… and welcoming new people into the department is a blast.”
Starring Juniors Skylar Shaffer and Sarah Meklir as Catherine, Ali Khalid and Carlos O’Ryan as Tom, Danielle Gilbert and Julia Steinberg as Charlotte, Sydney Finger and Sera Chase as Pearl, Katie Marshall and Jasmine Britt as Frances, and Isaiah Olujide and John White as Mr. Reed. These Shining Lives performs November 7th and 8th at 7pm, and on Saturday, November 9th at 2 and 7 pm.