By Alex Sharp
On Saturday May 11 and Sunday May 12 a large cast of Frontier students performed the 2019 edition of FRED (for real entertainment duh!), titled “Naked and Afred.” FRED is a collection of skits directed, produced, and performed by students at Frontier. Some of the skits are inspired by Saturday Night Live and other comedy sources while others were written by cast members.
This year’s directors were seniors Ava Harper and Phaelon Koski who have been involved in the drama club and FRED throughout their time at Frontier.
“I look back on the show and I honest to god just don’t know how we pulled it off. Due to sports/concert scheduling we were not able to have a full cast dress rehearsal until five hours before opening night” recalled Harper.
Harper’s co director was a perfect example of someone in FRED juggling a lot of responsibility. On top of his classes Koski was competing in track and field (He recently won the Western MA championship in the 400 hurdles and broke the school record), rehearsing in band, and directing FRED. Despite everyone being more than busy at the end of the school year, the cast did much more than just pull off the show.
“I gotta give it to my cast, they pulled off one hell of a show. We got about 250 heads Saturday, and over 100 on Sunday. We made over 1200 dollars at the door as well” said Harper.
Why was the show so successful? “No matter what, high schoolers will always be hilarious” said Harper.
There was certainly no shortage of laughs. Junior Gabe Jones-Thomson starred in two skits that brought the house down. The first skit depicted a satirical poetry slam in which Jones-Thomson wore a dress and ranted about his bees. The second was a skit called “Naturally” that he performed with his brother Joe. They played vegan shoppers who run into each other in the grocery store. One dietary comment led to another and before long the two were in an all out shouting match over who was more of a vegan. Part of the humor of this skit is that the brothers are vegans in real life.
“Naturally was by far my favorite skit. We adapted it from an online comedy organization, and my brother and I changed some of the jokes to make it more applicable to us and our well known unusual dietary choices. The worst/best part was that I strapped a real dead fish to my arm… the stench was awful” Jones-Thomson said with a grin.
“This was my first FRED and it made me wish I had started earlier. I highly encourage anyone that even has a slight interest to do it next year” he added.
Another highlighting performance at FRED was the return of Hood Milk and Coopaloop. The senior rap duo of Eric Trueswell and Colby Nourse originally performed at the poetry slam, failing to qualify for the final round (to the dismay of many in the student audience).
“People loved Hood Milk and Coopaloop at the poetry slam, so I thought that FRED would be a great opportunity to give the people what they wanted one last time before we graduated. I definitely learned a lot about rap structure and how it’s pretty hard to make funny lines with good flows and rhymes that are school appropriate” said Trueswell.
Other popular skits covered everything from courtroom dramas to stolen bikes and Santa Claus abductions. While FRED provided members of the community an opportunity to enjoy a night of laughter, it also fostered new relationships between cast members.
“FRED was more than a production, it was about forming a new community of friends you’d never think you’d get close to” said senior cast member Fiona Ferry.
Video of the entire production can be found on FCAT’s Youtube channel. FCATMEDIA