, Derry, New Hampshire

October 31, 2013

Pinkerton Players present holiday classic

By Julie Huss

---- — DERRY — A holiday classic takes the stage at Pinkerton Academy next month.

“It’s a Wonderful Life,” a play inspired by the popular 1946 holiday movie starring James Stewart, will be presented by the Pinkerton Players Nov. 14, 15 and 16 at 7 p.m. and Nov. 17 at 2 p.m. at the Stockbridge Theatre.

The show features a student cast taking on the roles of American businessman George Bailey, his wife, Mary, the devious Mr. Potter and the admiring angel Clarence.

The play is under the direction of retired Pinkerton English teacher Ann West. She taught at the high school for more than 50 years and was head of the English department.

She still takes on the annual fall plays and will help organize Pinkerton’s 200th anniversary celebration in 2014.

West said the play version of the story is relatively new, with Pinkerton being one of the few outlets in this part of the country to stage the show.

She said it’s very popular in the Midwest and on the West Coast.

Senior Matt McGinnis takes on the role of George, who works hard all his life, but wants to do more than remain in his small town of Bedford Falls, N.Y.

“I want to build things like skyscrapers,” McGinnis says as he plays George on stage. “It’s been a dream all my life.”

But following the sudden death of his father, George takes a job at the local building and loan and becomes frustrated and angry about his life. He ends up learning life’s lessons as Clarence the angel shows him just what life would be like if George had never existed.

Playing the young George is freshman Josh Gore, who said the entire cast watched the film prior to rehearsing for the show.

Many had never seen the famous movie.

Sophia Shay plays Violet and never saw the film before.

“I think it’s real comical but it has a really good message,” she said.

Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for senior citizens and students, and are available by calling 437-5210.