Property Rites


Photo by Luke Borgmann

Lincoln East’s Property Rites crew doing a dress rehearsal.

The East High production of the one-act play, Property Rites, debuted on Tuesday, November 14 at 7:00 p.m. in the East High auditorium. After the home showing, the cast and crew took Property Rites to competitions and festivals  around Nebraska, including The Lincoln High One Act Festival.   It was a good chance for the cast and crew to improve and get ready for their district competition at Seward on December 1st.  At the Lincoln festival, the East cast and crew were one of nine casts that performed that day., and their show one best ensemble.

The one act play had to come together quickly. First-year director Melissa Walburn read many plays during the summer before deciding on the show, which is about a businessman, Kyle, who is trying to sell female humanoid robots called “figures.”  To his surprise, the figures are slowly turning into humans due to a virus, so his plan to sell them to people is foiled.  He decides to destroy them and receive insurance money.  The figures are “breaking free” and struggle to survive throughout the play.

Walburn knew she had many strong female actors willing to do the play, which helped her to choose Property Rites with its 16 female figures.  Tryouts began in early October, and soon after, all the cast members were assigned their roles.

There are a total of 22 cast members in the play, and they’ve been hard at work.  The students practice Monday through Thursday after school from 3:00 to 5:30.  They work on their lines, sing, and do choreography, among other things.  During rehearsals, everyone feels free to be themselves and have a fun time whilst working really hard and perfecting tedious details.

Mrs. Walburn is really proud of her students’ willingness to work.  The most challenging part for the 16 figures is all the precise movements they are tasked to do.  Because they’re robots, the figures have lots of movements and lines in unison.  Despite everything, the director was very excited to see the play improve so quickly.