CENTERBURG — Otto Frank sat clutching a scarf gifted to him by his daughter, Anne, in a somber moment with his protectors, Mr. Kraler and Miep Geis, claiming he wants to leave Amsterdam because of “too many memories.”
- Centerburg High School
- 3782 Columbus Road
- Centerburg, OH 43011
- Saturday, September 25, 2010 - 8:00 PM
- Sunday, September 26, 2010 - 2:00 PM
It was the opening scene in a moving production of “The Diary of Anne Frank,” performed Friday morning for Knox County students at Centerburg High School. This was the second of two performances for student groups before three scheduled public performances this weekend.
Directed by Bruce Jacklin for MTVarts, “The Diary of Anne Frank” tells the gripping story of a Dutch girl, her family and several other Jews hiding in an attic during the Nazi occupation of Holland. Jacklin selected this production based on the curriculum of many area high school students who are being introduced to Frank’s chronicle in literature classes.
In telling the emotional message portrayed in the production, Jacklin said “It started with fear, then they were afraid, then angry, then frustrated, and then felt hate. Once hate sets in, all other emotions are shut off.”
Played by Mount Vernon High School senior Kinsey Crow, Anne Frank was a lively, free-spirited teenager who was aware of the horrible events surrounding her but was not full of remorse, choosing to view her current living situation as a boarding house.
“There are no walls, bolts or locks they can put on your mind,” she exclaimed to her father.
The actors portrayed the vast difference in character personalities, from the lively Anne, to the cantankerous Mr. Van Daan (Robert Bennett) to the level-headed Otto Frank (Desmond Wall).
As days turned into months, tensions began to rise and nerves became very short. An additional resident was added to the mix, only to escalate tensions even more as Anne now shared a room with Dr. Dussel (Jerry Redfield). Anne’s early confrontations with fellow teenage resident Peter Van Daan (Steven Meeker) later turned into a positive yet intriguing relationship, despite the negative circumstances.
Anne at times spoke of her love for her father, but shared no common interests with her mother. Her positive spirit then brought joy to everyone at Hanukkah when Anne presented everyone with gifts, while singing happy songs.
Emotions and spirits took an upward turn when word was shared of the Allied invasion. This gave everyone insight to the depths they had fallen and their lost sense of hope. But depression quickly set in once again when no other positive word was heard. Despite all this, Anne remained positive, telling all to “think of good things you can hang on to.”
As the inevitable finally came and the families were found and taken away by the Nazis, the crowd sat in blackened silence, listening to solemn music play envisioning the horrific atrocities being carried out at concentration camps.
As the production closed, each cast member came out, one by one, and stood in front of a screen which showed a photo of their character and telling of that person’s fate. Mr. Kraler and Meip Gies along with Otto Frank were the lone survivors. This was a very touching moment, as the audience grasped the terrible reality of this story.
“The Diary of Anne Frank” will also be delivered in public performance at 8 p.m. today and 2 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 26 at the CHS auditorium.