A Behind the Scenes Look at Leyden’s New Theatre Production


 Lights, Camera, Action! Leyden’s new production “The Diary of Anne Frank” is coming to the West Leyden Auditorium. Based on Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl, the story begins with Otto Frank returning to the secret location where he and his family went into hiding during the early years of the Holocaust in Amsterdam. Many know of this very infamous, true story, of the inner thoughts of a young girl in hiding.

With a total of fourteen cast members and tech crew members, the Freshmen through Senior students started production in the month of  September and is finally opening next weekend. Sophomore, Maria Melendez, leads as Anne Frank; a Jewish girl living in the Netherlands, under Nazi occupation, Anne writes from the attic, while her and her family are in hiding from the Nazis. She writes about the struggles of bigotry and relationships she makes, while in hiding. Anne’s diary documents the trials and troubles experienced by the family. As she feels hopeless, she battles teenage issues and loneliness before her family is discovered and arrested by the Nazis.

Sound Technician, Katie Dermody

Behind the scenes, the stage crew has been very hard at work. We caught up with “Techie”, Katie Dermody “I am honestly excited for my first ever show doing sound. I would love to pursue sound for the rest of my life, in college and as a career. So I’m really excited to finally put it all together and be really proud of the product and everything that we’ve worked so hard for.” Dermody says. For many of the cast members, this is their very first show in a High School setting. But for others this is one of the many shows they have added to their list. Dermody has participated in many shows in the past four years and it’s her first time being apart of the backstage crew this year. 

But for Costume Designer, Bryanna Robles, she has participated in both on stage acting and backstage helping, here is what she has to say, “I am very excited to see the costumes. Since this is a period piece show most of the costumes will look like their from the 1940s, which is exciting for me.” She is lucky to be apart of the costume design aspect of the production since it involves many on hand decisions. 

As you can see, the production is very student run. With cast members that have only been in High School for a couple of months, it seems as they are very excited for the opening and can’t wait to have an auditorium filled with an audience. We asked our interviewees one last question and why you should come and watch it, “I really think it’s an amazing show because there’s times of humor, suspense, bonding and intimate moments. There’s just a really amazing and powerful message behind this show.”

There are many different renditions to the biography of Anne Frank but I believe this productions shows what people at that time really had to go through during the Holocaust in a very personal way. The audience gets to look into what exactly happened to Anne Frank and her family.

The retelling of the widely known and award-winning story is set to take the stage October 18th and 19th at 7:00 PM and closing the 20th at 3:00 PM. Admission is $2 for students and $3 for adults