The Diary of Anne Frank: A Touching Story
by Mark Ositashvili (Age 10)
Have you ever wondered how Jewish people lived during the second World War? Most people know that they suffered, but just how they suffered is what really struck me about this play.
The Diary of Anne Frank, written by Frances Goodrich and Albert Hackett and directed by Tim Picotte at the Gladstone theatre, is a true story about a Jewish girl who lived during the second World War. As you probably already know Jewish people were looked upon with hatred during this time. The Frank family goes into hiding to prevent the Nazis from finding them and putting them in the concentration camps which could lead to them being killed in gas chambers.
The Frank family shares their hiding place with another family, the Van Daans and with a man named Mr. Kraler. Another man by the name of Mr. Dussel brings them food and news. I enjoyed the play because each character has a personality that fit them and the actor very well. Anne, played by Marie-Pier Jean, is a hyper-active girl who loves to fool around. Mr. Kraler, played by Joel Rahn, is a grumpy old man who is always disturbed by Anne’s antics. Mr. Dussel, Dirk Visbach, is nice to both families and tries to keep the mood happy. It is nice to see that the ensemble manages to fit in some jokes throughout the play to lighten the mood as well. The shining star of this play is definitely Jean playing Anne, but I also have to give recognition to the director, Picotte, because he does a good job of showing how Jewish people really lived in those days.
All of the scenes are contained in the same house. The house is divided into four sections: the common room, Peter Van Daan’s room, Anne’s and Mr. Kraler’s room, and Mr. and Mrs. Van Daan’s room. A scene is usually focused on only one of these rooms, but the actors still played their rolls even if they weren’t in the main playing space. For example, when Anne was annoying Mr. Kraler, Peter was still playing with his stuffed cat toy in his room. Sometimes everything would go dark and a projection screen would come down with images of handwriting and a voiceover. It was Anne talking as if she was writing in her diary.
If you want to hear a story about a family trying to hang tough during World War 2 told through an amazing and fantastic stage play, then you should definitely check out The Diary of Anne Frank.