The New Kid in Town

Eighth+grader+Denton+Owen+and+senior+Brooke+Mega+listen+to+fellow+cast+mates+giving+notes+after+a+run+through+of+the+first+act+of+Hudson+High+School%27s+production+of+Godspell.

Eighth grader Denton Owen and senior Brooke Mega listen to fellow cast mates giving notes after a run through of the first act of Hudson High School’s production of Godspell.

by Diana Vasselin

Eighth grader Denton Owen and senior Brooke Mega listen to fellow cast mates giving notes after a run through of the first act of Hudson High School's production of Godspell.
Eighth grader Denton Owen and senior Brooke Mega listen to fellow castmates giving notes after a run through of the first act of Godspell.

From Scuttle in the middle school production of The Little Mermaid Jr. to Kurt Cobain in Godspell, eighth grader Denton Owen embraced his role as the youngest cast member in the fall musical.

Denton is a great addition to the cast. “Denton performs well with the rest of the cast, and I could only imagine how it would be like performing in a play of mainly only [upperclassmen],” said senior Rossini Neto.

Owen started to get into acting when he saw his sister, junior Leia Owen, performing on stage and thought that it would be fun to try. Leia said he is gaining a lot of experience and is becoming much stronger as an actor.

“It’s just a disadvantage because I’m not really used to how things work,” said Owen. “I like that I know a lot of people, so it’s not like being in a show with strangers.”

“As Denton is treated just like everybody else, he is held to their same standards.  He knows that he needs to give 100% the entire time that he is on stage,” said director Kathleen McKenzie.

As a new actor to the school, Denton started to understand the process. “I’ve been getting better at memorizing lines and singing,” said Denton. “It’s a lot different from The Little Mermaid Jr. because it is mostly student run.”

In this production, cast members portrayed musical icons as their characters. On October 10-13, Owen took on the challenge of becoming the late Kurt Cobain from the 90s rock band Nirvana. During rehearsals, Owen kept a smile on his face as he joked with the upperclassmen.

“I loved my character just because I got to be someone totally different from me, which is really fun for me,” said Owen. “My biggest moment was when we walked to the front of the stage for bows, and we got a standing ovation.”

Being the youngest in a cast is neither an advantage nor a disadvantage. “All of our young cast members are the future of drama society.  The senior members know that they need to teach them what is expected of them now so that our department will continue to grow and produce the wonderful shows that we have been creating,”said McKenzie.

This is just the start for Denton. “I am planning on doing more shows. I’m definitely doing The Producers, and I’m also going to audition for Amahl and The Night Visitors with the Arts Alliance,” said Owen.