Wilton High School senior Luke Maloney is one kid who is not throwing away his shot.
Even juggling the stress of college applications and the pressure of senior year responsibility is challenging enough, Maloney refuses to allow the weight of his last year at WHS to restrict his ambitions, channeling his passion for screenwriting into creating this year’s senior show, SCAMILTON–An America Rip-off.
The show is a product of Maloney’s comedic wit cultivated through four years of participation in the WHS improv program, Freeplay, and years of sketch comedy study. Scamilton, a parody of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s beloved Broadway hit, Hamilton, is a student-run show co-directed by senior show director veteran Mary Jo Duffy and will feature sets and costumes influenced by a combination of the 20th and 18th centuries as well as contemporary music and dance.
The audience will recognize notorious figures in history, such as George Washington, King George III, Betsy Ross, and other newly eccentric characters remodeled in a way that leads to all kinds of humorous encounters and incidents. The show radiates originality and vigor, and is laced with comedic highlights and tender moments that ultimately showcase the enjoyment of the seniors involved as they bond on stage before venturing into the world to pursue their separate, post-high school paths.
Assuming the responsibility of devising and writing an entire production as a high school student is impressive enough, but Maloney also took on the role of director, directing scenes and reinforcing scene-work with individual cast members alongside Duffy.
“I started writing it two summers ago and it was originally intended to be a written for a class not my own, and when I approached [producer] Marty Kozlowski with it I had actually written four different plays at that time because I just wanted to write. But then she decided to take the risk of letting me direct,” Maloney says.
The show is meticulously planned and maintains an air of sophistication and professionalism notable for a student-written show.
“[I’ve] been through 10 separate drafts of the play, and 20 pages of material have been cut,” Maloney observes.
So why go buy tickets to the room where it happens? There’s the importance of supporting an incredible effort by one student working hard to pursue his dream, and the just-as-equal effort by the senior actors enjoying themselves on stage. Maloney puts it this way too: “See the show because it’s an experiment having a student write and direct it, and if it does very well that opportunity will be afforded by classes to come.”
Something Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote in the original could be just as easily said about Maloney: “History has its eyes on you!”
SCAMILTON runs Thursday, Feb. 8 at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, Feb. 9 at 8 p.m.; and Saturday, Feb. 10 at 5 p.m. in the Wilton High School Clune Auditorium. Tickets are $12 each for general admission and will be sold during the high school lunch waves as well as at the door on the evenings of the show.