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The Thespians find the true Daniel Hand in “The Disappearance of Daniel Hand”


Huntley High School’s Thespian Troupe performed “The Disappearance of Daniel Hand,” a play by Dan O’Brien, this past weekend. The controversial show was directed by Christine DeFrancesco.

The play follows Shannon, a high school student making a documentary about the disappearance of one of her classmates, Daniel Hand. Throughout the play, the audience gets to see what high schoolers go through on a daily basis: stereotyping, name calling, family struggles, crushes, and a number of other things.

“Teenagers are in such a place in your life where you feel invisible and judged all the time, that I just thought this is a really appropriate subject matter for teenagers,” said DeFrancesco.

Cast and crew members bow before the audience at the end of the play (C Thomas)
Cast and crew members bow before the audience at the end of the play (C Thomas)

Getting the high school perspective is what made this play phenomenal. It was relatable to students and really showcased the isolation that high schoolers so often feel.

Another thing that made this production stand out was their use of cinematography. Because this was a play about a girl making a documentary, it was vital to show that in the play somehow.

A short video would be shown of a student talking about Daniel Hand, the video would stop, and on stage would be Shannon with her video camera and the person who was in the video, picking up right where the video had left off.

The crew filmed and put all the videos together, making it look like someone professional put it together.

It was also very evident that the actors and crew enjoyed what they were doing. It was easy to see that in their acting and even after the show was over.

“It was very well ran, it was fun,” said stage manager Joshua Szeszol.

Overall this production was one of the unique ones done at Huntley High. There was a lot of time and effort put into making this show all that it was, and it payed off.

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