The Odd Couple

Receiving notes, the male cast practices a scene on Jan. 23.

From April 6–8, theater will be presenting two versions of Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple.” The two versions of the play will swap the genders of the two leads, Felix Ungar and Oscar Madison in the male version and Florence Ungar and Olive Madison in the female version. The story line includes the characters deciding to move into an apartment together after Felix’s, or his counterpart, Florence’s recent divorce. Together, the two roommates slowly lapse into their old ways and begin to treat the other like their old spouse. The male version will be performed on April 7 at 7 p.m and 8 at 2 p.m., while the female version is on April 6 and 8 at 7 p.m.

“I’ve never seen a cast with two different gender associations,” actor and junior Manuel Arias said. “It’s a brand new experience for me, but overall I think it’s going to be very interesting.”

Practicing for Act one Scene one of “The Odd Couple,” the female cast crowded by an invisible door on Jan. 23. Photo by Evelyn Leiva.

The actors in the play believe having two casts is different, yet challenging. Since there is only one director, getting notes or ideas is more difficult than usual.

“It’s nice if you can really focus in on one cast instead of two because then you have more minds that are thinking on it instead of jumping in between,” actor and junior Abbey Porter said. “What’s difficult for me is not having Mr. Erickson in the room to give us notes and advice.”

One goal of this production is to allow as many people to have a role as possible. Performing two versions of the play allows for more actors to become involved in the theater process.

“I directed ‘The Odd Couple’ 13 years ago, then I found out there was a female cast,” Drama Teacher Mr. Erickson said. “I loved the idea of having a female cast because it opened up the production to more female actors, which allows for a more diverse cast.”
The price of admission is $6 at the bookstore or $8 at the door and goes on sale after spring break. For any questions about theater or their productions, talk to Mr. Erickson in Room 404.

(Feature photo by Elijah McKay)