‘The Nerd’: Coming soon to a nerd school near you


Courtesy of Audrey Robinson

Dyllon Martin, Chloe Sharp, Kylie Reed, Caleb Jenkins and Andra Dusin practice in costume for “The Nerd.”

Amy Zhang, Staff Writer

“The Nerd” is more than just an unfortunate stereotype of MSMS’s student body — it’s also a play coming to the school on Thursday, Oct. 14, and Friday, Oct. 15.

Written by Larry Shue, “The Nerd” is a two-act play centered on the conflict between veteran Willum Cubbert (Dyllon Martin) and the man who saved his life, titular nerd Rick Steadman (Caleb Jenkins). Trouble arises when the two meet for the first time, and the unexpected arrival sees Willum’s life grow increasingly complicated due to Rick’s lack of social skills. The cast is made up of the Dramatic Performance class, the crew is composed of Drama Club members and the sponsor is Dr. Thomas Easterling. Cast members promise the comedy will be an entertaining watch.

“It’s really funny,” Martin said. “It has a lot of little jokes that’ll be thrown in, and different stage directions so you can really tell what’s happening.”

This is Martin’s first time acting in a play; however, he used to be in theater and is experienced in improv. Jenkins, who is also the play’s director, said Martin’s ease at memorizing lines and getting into character made him a good fit for the leading role.

“I work with other actors on blocking, and, of course, inflections, and Dyllon’s doing really well,” Jenkins said. “This is my first time directing, and I gave [the actors] critiques on their characters. I like to let them have their own interpretation of their characters and just putting in my input when I felt it was needed. I think everyone’s filling their roles really well.”

“The Nerd” represents many firsts not just for cast and crew members, but for MSMS as well. It is the first two-act play the Dramatic Performance class has ever done, along with the first in-person play at MSMS since the pandemic started.

“We’re all very excited to be back on stage,” producer Audrey Robinson said. “Pretty much all of our people are aged theater people, so they’ve all missed performing as well. I’m very excited.”

Dramatic Performance has another play planned for the second quarter, “The 146 Point Flame,” which it will compete with in December. Drama Club will also perform a musical in the spring. But for now, Robinson is focused on the present play and hopes to share it with the student body.

“Come to support the arts at a STEM school and to welcome theatre back to MSMS,” Robinson said. “The best part about theatre is performing for a live audience, and that’s a pleasure we’ve lost over the pandemic. This is an opportunity for all students to be a part of something new, and we can’t wait to open our doors again.”

“The Nerd” debuts at 5 p.m. Oct. 14 and a second performance is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Oct. 15, both in Shackleford Auditorium.