‘Romeo and Juliet’ opens Thursday in Templeton
Drama teacher-director Catherine Kingsbury debuts with Templeton High School
Templeton High School has a new drama teacher-director, Catherine Kingsbury, who previously worked at Atascadero High School. Her debut performance of William Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” opens Thursday, in what Kingsbury describes as a soft opening to allow the cast and crew to work out any bugs. She said that unless there are any major technical issues, the show will go on like any other. Romeo will be played by junior Joe Pandosh and Juliet played by sophomore Carson Ogburn.
“I’m really happy to be [at Templeton High School],” Kingsbury said. “The entire school district is about expanding the arts … it’s a really nice time to be here.”
She added that she wants the school’s Performing Arts Center used more by the community and the students and said she is also planning to start a community theater. “Romeo and Juliet” has a cast and crew of 40 students — 30 in the cast and 10 on the crew.
“Any student can be in an afterschool production, they don’t have to be in a drama class,” Kingsbury said. Auditions were held in early September and the cast has been working hard since mid-September.
“We’ve been working on it pretty steady since then,” Kingsbury said. “I’m there pretty much every day. The students don’t have to be there every day if they’re not in the scene we’re rehearsing.”
This production of “Romeo and Juliet,” Kingsbury said, will be done in the traditional style.
“They’re just doing a great job,” she said. “I know some people think Shakespeare is beyond high schoolers but I don’t think so.”
Templeton Unified School District board trustee and drama parent Shirley Sigmund said that the cast has been rehearsing nearly ever day after school and on Saturday.
“They are professional,” Sigmund said. “They are so good but it’s because of the work the kids put into it. We’re excited to have [Kingsbury]. It will be really exciting to see this in our performing arts center.”
The soft opening will be held on Thursday, Nov. 13 at 7 p.m. The rest of the performances will be held on Friday, Nov. 14 and 21 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, Nov.. 15 and Nov. 22 at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $8 for students and $10 for adults and are available through Brown Paper Tickets or at the door. The performing arts center holds about 300 people. For more information, call (805) 591-4770.
“What’s great about it is every seat is a good seat,” Kingsbury said. “You can see no matter where you are in the theater.”