Courtroom drama performance to open
by Jordan Lewis
Oct 17, 2013 | 1543 views | 0 0 comments | 132 132 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Twelve local high school students will take on the roles of an indignant jury as part of the upcoming production of Twelve Angry Jurors by San Lorenzo Valley High School.

Twelve Angry Jurors, originally written by Reginald Rose in 1954 for the Studio One anthology television series, will be performed at Park Hall in Ben Lomond beginning next weekend.

Unlike the other plays and comedies the school has taken on in the past, Twelve Angry Jurors is a tense courtroom drama that requires every character to be part of the performance for the entire duration. 

“I thought it was an interesting challenge for the cast to be in character on stage for the entire show, really focusing on that character development and how those relationships develop throughout the production,” said drama teacher and director Carly Carruthers.

The play centers around twelve jurors who must decide whether a 19-year-old man is guilty of killing his father and should receive the death sentence. 

The protagonist who sets them awry is juror eight who is the first to vote “not guilty” as he tries to make his fellow jurors look at the case objectively. 

“I’m the first juror to hold out,” said Dan Jeffrey who plays juror eight. “All other’s vote guilty and I’m the first to vote not guilty.”

As they deliberate, the characters must find ways to communicate with each other as their own personal judgments and assumptions are revealed.

“It’s very difficult because it’s not separate,” Jeffrey said. “Everyone’s lines are intermingled.  It feels like it bounces around a lot.”

Each character is different.   

“I am the really rational and reasonable person,” said Jessica Gnau, who plays juror four. “I keep bringing everyone back to the facts of the case and kind of move everyone along when the foreman isn’t.”

The play also has a message about how people should not be hasty when it comes to the lives of others and how situations should be looked at critically before blindly accepting them. 

“The message is the importance of taking the time to reflect on our assumptions and be open to thinking critically about the opinions we form about people and experiences,” Carruthers said. 

The play will be performed at 7 p.m., Oct. 24, 25 and 26 and November 1 and 2 and at 2 p.m. Oct. 27 and Nov. 2 at Park Hall, 9525 Mill Street, in Ben Lomond.

General admission is $10; students and seniors, $8, students with ASB, $7.

A special community performance will be at 2 p.m. Oct. 27 and all tickets will be $7.

- To comment, e-mail intern reporter Jordan Lewis at, call 438-2500 or post a comment at

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