What “Fools” These Mortals Be


Abigail Wood

Leon Tolchinsky, played by sophomore Christopher Freitas (right) talks with Snetsky, played by freshman Manny Tijerina (left).

The Drama Club’s new play, “Fools,” opened Thursday, Oct. 18. It was a play originally written by the late Neil Simon in 1981. “Fools” takes place in a town called Kulyenchikov, Ukraine, where everyone is cursed to be stupid. Schoolteacher Leon Tolchinsky goes to the village to try to teach them, where he ends up falling in love with the beautiful, yet idiotic Sophia. But he has a rival for Sophia’s affection: the villainous count Gregor Yousekevitch, the descendant of the man who started the curse. Leon realizes that there are only two ways to break the curse: educate Sophia or let her marry Yousekevitch. If Leon fails, he will fall victim to the curse and become a fool.

The endearing thing about this play was that it was funny enough to distract from the absurd plot, sort of like Abbott and Costello or Marx Brothers movies. There were some pretty hilarious jokes, but also some that fell flat or went over the audience’s heads. Keep in mind this is a high school play, so do not expect the acting to be perfect, but it was still convincing. Russian accents are hard to do, but the actors usually made it look easy, and when an unexpected mistake occurred, they improvised so well it was nearly impossible to tell that something went wrong. It simply was an entertaining play, but it still had problems, such as the accents and confusing storyline. Overall, it is probably fair to say that this play was just as Simon intended for it.

“Fools” will be performed in the auditorium Oct. 18-20 and 25-27 at 7 p.m. and on the 20th and 27th at 2 p.m.

Rating: Quite comical and entertaining, despite its ridiculousness. 3 out of 5 stars.