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NRHS students excited to perform “I Remember Mama”

The cast of the New Richmond High School Drama Department’s production of “I Remember Mama” warm up for their rehearsal at the middle school on Thursday, April 23. (Photo by Jordan Willi)

This year’s spring play will be the last for 11 seniors from the New Richmond High School Drama Department. Although this might be their last play at New Richmond, the seniors couldn’t be happier with this spring’s product, which is “I Remember Mama” by John van Drutenruten.

“Of all the plays we have done during my high school career, this is definitely one of my favorites,” said production manager/student assistant and senior Michaela Jorstad. “It is a favorite because it is an American classic and you get to see some many aspects of each cast member. There is happiness, but there is also sadness.”

According to director Katelyn Peterson, “I Remember Mama” is an American comedy about a Norwegian family that is living in San Francisco in the early 1900s. the story focuses on the family’s eldest daughter and gives the audience snippets of what her and her family’s life was like according to her memory.

“The reason this play really stood out to me was that it has a large cast, so it is awesome to get a lot of kids on stage,” Peterson said. “It is also a great script and a great story. When you read it, you fall in love with it. I have seen it and been in it throughout my life. It is a heartwarming story.”

The play starts on May 1 with a 7 p.m. show, followed by another 7 p.m. show on Saturday, May 2, and a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, May 3. The play will be performed on the stage in the high school auditorium and costs $5 for adults and $3 for students.

The play calls for a cast of 24 actors, which is one of the largest that the high school has put on in the last few years. The play runs around two hours long with a 15-minute intermission.

“It was a really different part because, even though I acted a lot when I was younger, I’ve never had to play a younger child before,” said junior Haley Viebrock, who plays Dagmar a five year old little girl who is obsessed with her cat. “Being a more mature person now and then go back to play a younger person is really different.”

Despite losing 11 seniors to graduation this year, but Peterson and the rest of the upperclassmen have already started to see the younger students, especially some of the freshman, stepping up to take bigger leadership roles within the drama department.

“I’ve been surprised by the freshman. There is a large group of them that came into the program this year and they have shown to be really responsible and way farther ahead of me when I was their age,” said senior Gus Franchere, who plays Papa. “They are going to be so successful in this drama department that I’m not worried at all about the future for the department.”

One such freshman, John Haasch, got started with the middle school drama department during eighth grade and wanted to keep acting in high school “I started in the drama department last year as an eighth-grader, but I wanted to stick with it since I enjoyed it a lot at the middle school,” said freshman John Haasch, who plays Uncle Chris. “The accents we had to learn for this play were pretty tough to get a handle on. We had a lot of time to rehearse so that made things a little easier all around.”

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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