By Carina Calderón
At times it is hard to empathize with the characters we see on the screen or even in skits that we perform ourselves. However, the Granada Hills Charter High School (GHCHS) drama department’s production of “A Flea in Her Ear” truly made the characters believable and a treat to watch.
On November 6 and 7, drama teacher Stuart Fingeret’s drama classes performed “A Flea in Her Ear” in Highlander Hall. This “bedroom farce,” or light comedy based on the sexual pairings and recombinations of characters moving through improbable plots, kept the audience captivated and on the edge of their seats.
Under Fingeret’s direction, the stellar production was met with immediate gasps of concern and uncontrollable laughter, relaying the success of both the performers and the comedic atmosphere of the play.
The school production was modeled after David Ives’ readaptation of the original 1968 play written by Georges Feydeau and directed by Jacques Charon.
The play centers around Frenchwoman Raymonde Chandebise (junior Vanessa Ontiveros) and her husband, Victor Chandebise (senior Angel Cid). From the start of the play, we focus on Raymonde’s suspicion that her husband is having an affair after receiving his suspenders in the mail.
After communicating this worry to her best friend, Lucienne Homenides De Histangua ( junior Jessica Herman), the two write an anonymous letter asking Victor to come to the Frisky Kitty Hotel in order to catch him in the act. Chaos ensues as multiple characters gain knowledge of the contents of the letter and arrive at the local hotel to find one another with their spouses.
It was easy to relate to the emotions portrayed by the actors. There was no moment in which the audience misunderstood the mood that was being conveyed or felt lost during the many twists and turns of the play. After several months of preparation and long nights of perfecting lines, the cast successfully captured the essence of the play.
In addition, the production did an excellent job of accurately portraying the time period of the play as seen through the beaded bodices of the women, the manner in which the men spoke to and of women, and the language used by the characters themselves. Collectively, the play sparked nothing more than praise for the performers and overall delight for the storyline.
Along with the audience enjoying this humorous production, the performers themselves also deeply appreciated the script as well as one another’s company.
“I really enjoyed the script. The translation we used was by David Ives who’s a notoriously clever wordsmith. I was still finding new jokes in the script the week of the play, the dialogue is just so loaded. [Not to mention,] the cast for the production was great. There was just this huge amount of camaraderie and comfort with each other and when a cast clicks like that it really improves the performance,” Ontiveros said.
If you missed out on this play, be sure to buy a ticket for the spring musical. You just might be blown away with what you see played out on stage.