Pictured: Jalen Saip and Paige Louter. Photo by Riun Garner.
I always don’t know who to relate to when it comes to teenage coming-of-age stories. None of the stereotypes fit me or my high school friends, and their issues seem unrealistic. Perhaps it’s the exaggeration of the American high school stereotypes or my strange school with much different values. Either way, it’s hard to appreciate the story and the characters fully.
The Wolves by Sarah DeLappe at Pacific Theatre, in association with Spoon Theatre directed by Jamie King was sadly no exception. The writing of the characters were flat and unrelatable. Too many characters’ stories were strung along a thin plot with random events popping up without warning. It was meant to be raw and authentic, but came off at times as crass and unrefined. However, the actors portrayed their given roles exceptionally well, including but not limited to Kim Larson as #00, Shona Struthers as #25, Montserrat Videla as #14, and of course, Paige Louter as #46.
Louter embodies the awkward and off-setting character down to the smallest of movements and the delivery of the choppy, anti-social lines. She has different interests and lead a different life from the rest of the girls, who at first seem threatening and mean. As the play goes by, the girls go through character development and changes, but as mentioned before there were too many characters and very little time for everyone’s stories. The set was simple with a green turf set up, and the chaos as the girls talk and practice was well shown while not being too distracting from the main conversation. The lighting was simple, but evoked emotions during the heavier transitions.
The role of #02 was played by the understudy, Anjela Magpantay, stepping in for Amanda Sum due to her injury. Which was a bit ironic considering what happens in the play. (spoiler alert!) Joking aside, with the limited time and resources Magpantay had access to, she did an exceptional job with the role.
The Wolves is about what it means to grow up and be in a team, but also accepting your differences. Catch the production at Pacific Theatre until November 10th.