Norko and Lake take the summer stage in one-act plays


Damon Norko

Daniel Lake and Cassidee Grunwald chat in the dressing room before the production of “Foodies.”

by Thomas French, Reporter

The Watermelon One-Act Festival had some special contestants. Damon Norko, Daniel Lake, and members of the class of 2018 performed in the festival.

Norko directed two entries, called “Foodies” and “Free at Last.” “Free at Last” was one of the finalists in the competition that featured 14 plays.

Norko said, “It was an incredibly intense theatrical experience.”

“Foodies” is about a man who wants to figure out what we really feel when we eat food, and “Free at Last” is a story about mixed marriage and class warfare. Norko described “Free at Last” as “light but provocative.”

The cast of both shows included Lake, Cassidee Grunwald, Kwame Shaka,  Parker Webb, Sheila Blanc and Uriah Roman.

Lake acted in both, playing the role of Fremont in “Foodies” and Corley in “Free at Last.” This was his first acting experience, and he found the experience fun and rewarding.

Lake said, “I enjoyed both roles; though, the “Foodies” role was more bombastic and much crazier to perform; the “Free at Last” role was more muted and required a more subtle approach.”

Lake is also the assistant director and worked on Almost Maine and Beauty and the Beast.

Grunwald played Julie in “Foodsies” and Nancy in “Free at Last.”

Norko will be directing another play this summer. His play “Properties” will be performed at the Theatre Project in Baltimore. Lake and Grunwald will be in the cast. The play will be performed on August 1, 2, 3 at 8 pm and on August 4 at 3 pm. Tickets will be available on Brown Paper Tickets.