You Can't Take It With You, which opens May 13, will have Hanford High School drama students tackling a story that revolves around an eccentric family during the country's Great Depression.
The Sycamores are doing their best to survive during a dark period in American history. Jobs are few and money is scarce, but each family member does his or her part to contribute.
One makes fireworks in the basement and another makes candy to sell on the streets while practicing to be a dancer. Only one member of the family actually has a regular job, and that's 22-year-old Alice.
Alice falls in love with the boss' son and plans to marry. But when the rich family meets the eccentric, not-so-rich Sycamore family, it's no surprise disaster soon follows and the wedding is called off.
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"I love this play," said director Matt Leggett. "I played the lead part of Grandpa Vanderhof in graduate school and directed it here at Hanford High School in 1994. Both experiences are treasured memories for me.
"It is a funny, tender, poignant play that lets us laugh at ourselves and teach us what is important in life."
The play, written in 1936 by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart, is a comedy with a lesson about the importance of love and family, and the truth that you can't take it with you to the grave.
Penny Sycamore is played by Emily Curran, 16, and Alice Sycamore is played by Elspeth Jensen, 17. Alice's love interest, Tony Kirby, is played by Tyler Zirker, 15, and his snobby father is played by Cris Nix, 18. Grandpa Vanderhof is played by Max Bartholomew, 16.
The rest of the cast includes Kyle Sweet, 18, as Paul Sycamore; Bailey LePage, 15, as Essie Carmichael; Camren Bleiler, 15, as Ed Carmichael; and Leonie Oostrom, 18, as Rheba.
You Can't Take It With You follows on the heels of the school's recent production of The Fantasticks, which gave Leggett a bit of a challenge in directing consecutive plays.
That kind of turnaround demanded a lot of technical coordination between the flexible technical crew and the parent volunteers, Leggett said.
"These are the type of stories that stay with a young person for the rest of his or her life," he said. "This play means more to me now than it did (the first time). Life will do that to you. Maybe when I direct it again at age 62, I'll get even more out of it."
The show continues May 14 and 20-21 in the Hanford High auditorium, 450 Hanford St., Richland. Curtain time is 7:30 p.m.Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for students and are available at the door.