Q. Why did you choose "The Princess Bride" as your fall play?
Carrie Schafer. I chose "The Princess Bride" because it has always been one of my favorite movies. The characters are so rich, and really give the cast a chance to play. I always try to find a show that will challenge me as a director and challenge my actors.
Q. How many students are involved in the production?
Schafer. The cast includes 23 actors whom I have been directing for the past 10 weeks. The crew, led by tech director Mary Toledano, consists of 17 students, who have been pretty much living at the theater for the past 10 weeks.
Q. Describe some of the challenges involved in directing a movie into a play.
Schafer. The movie has so many locations: cliffs, forests, a castle, boat on open water, and a torture chamber pit. So my job is to adapt the screenplay and add elements of the book so we can go to all these places. I also wanted the actors to make the parts their own and not simply imitate the movie. I feel we have achieved a nice balance, and the kids have loved reinventing the parts.
Q. What do you think audiences will like best about this show?
Schafer. I think audiences will love seeing a well-loved movie acted live. We have added so many different elements, that I think the audience will feel they saw a fresh take on it. And I fully expect to hear some of the lines repeated by the audience.
Q. What makes this show unique?
Schafer. The show is unique because it hasn't been done around here. When searching for a show, I stumbled across so many theaters and colleges that had done their own versions in parks, in black boxes, and in forests. The response to these shows have been so huge and people loved it. So I thought it would be a fun show that would get people excited about what can be done onstage.
Q. How many plays have you directed for Geneva High School? What is your background?
Schafer. This is my third fall play at Geneva High School. I also directed "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten" and last year's "Laughing Stock." I have been an actor/director for 25-plus years. I started my own business, No Fear Acting 101, eight years ago, in which I am a private acting coach. I teach students all the elements of acting in a one on one setting, prepping kids for auditions and helping them hone the craft of acting. I love seeing the transformation of my students to confident performers, and I love when they finally get the part they have been waiting for. If my kids feel they have given their all onstage, and couldn't have done it any better, then I've done my job. I am a native to Batavia, and I live there with my husband Scott and my two boys, Luke and Nate.
If you go: "The Princess Bride" will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, at Geneva High School, 416 McKinley Ave. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students and will be available at the door. Tickets to any performance are only $1 for children 12 and younger who wear a prince/princess costume or Burger King crown to the performance. For details, call (630) 463-3800.