Supporting the Patriot Player Family

Thespian. A word derived from the name of the very first actor, Thespis. Before theater, people just stood in a chorus; it was Thespis who introduced the prologue and internal speeches. This left the crowd in awe as they never seen something so unique. To this day that same feeling is portrayed on the stage of the Ed Zompa auditorium by the Bob Jones Patriot Players. With their acting talents and their dedicated attitude, the advanced production class has shown time and time again how magical theater can be.

The Trumbauer District Festival consists of several schools competing for a shot at the state competition. There are two main categories: the individual events and the one-acts. Bob Jones students did well at competition, and many Bob Jones students will now advance to state. Even though they’re a supporting family of actors, they need your help to get there. “The Bell Witch” will be performed tonight at 7:00 PM for the general public and again for the student body on Tuesday, November 20 during 2nd and 4th blocks. You can purchase your ticket and help cover the costs of our Patriot Players transportation and lodging.

Patriot Players Taking the Stage

Cassie Robinson, a stage manager for both district and state Trumbauer for the past 7 years stated, “The one-acts are their own beast, but they are amazing to see. Looking at it from backstage is absolutely incredible, and so is seeing what these high schoolers can do in creating these forty-five minutes of art.”

This is a type of art where Bob Jones is second to none. There were 109 individual events, and out of them, 4 were given Excellent and 104 were given Superior ratings (93 of which Superiors are advancing to State), and there were 28 with perfect scores! Bob Jones’ one-act “The Bell Witch” was awarded Best Scenery and Best in Show, meaning it will also be performed at state competition. The pride felt by Mary Davis, B. Dwayne Craft, and the student directors for the results of students’ hard work is immeasurable.

“The struggle with the show is that we, as Mr. Craft likes to say, always ‘roll the dice.’ We don’t know how it’s going to end up,” explained theater instructor at Bob Jones Mary Davis. “District competition, though it’s a competition, is also all about collaboration and support of the arts as a whole. I love seeing each of the schools– while competing ferociously– also support the other schools. It’s not like in sports where there seems to be this great divide. The theater is definitely family within our own school and within the community as a whole.”

“It is a privilege to do it every year. I’m so happy that I get to be a part of it, see everything- it’s wonderful,” stated Robinson. “This festival is life-changing for some kids. Theater is very powerful.”


The Bob Jones theater department does not stay behind when you graduate. Many of our thespian alumni have returned to watch many of the shows that the theater has put on. The bonds between thespians remain strong even after graduation.

Timothy Earnst and Collin Riddell were both in advanced theater and have gone to almost every advanced production show. Each time they see a different show with a new cast, it is clear as day the shimmer and pride they have for the Patriot Players.

Two other alumni from the advanced production class came to support the cast and crew. Cameron Sanderfer and Seth Slaton, two former Patriot Players known for the former roles in The Axeman’s Requiem,” reminded everyone that once a Patriot Player, always a Patriot Player.


Mackenzie Kilpatrick is a senior and one of two student directors for advanced production. Take note that these student directors have been hand-picked by two senior directors, each of whom has their own particular set of skills when it comes to theater arts.

Mackenzie Kilpatrick stated that it can indeed be “very stressful.” As I continued to ask questions her responses were not completely positive. However, as the conversation continued, I came to the realization that she never once stopped smiling. Who talks bad about something and smiles? That instant I understood. In order to appreciate something, you have to take all the negatives with it. I know for a fact she enjoys her job, because most of the time, she kept on smiling.

Justin Peele is a junior and the lead for not only the Bob Jones musical production of Catch Me if You Can, which will be ready in the spring, but he is also the lead of the one-act show. “I think it’s so cool that a world can be created on a stage and that someone will believe that I am that person. Someone will think that I am said person and I find that fascinating. My older sister was in production and she was great.” Justin really admires his peers and hopes to excel and meet their expectations. He doesn’t worry as much as others because he is confident of his talents and the talents of his peers.


The latest production show “The Bell Witch” is based off a southern gothic tale of the Bell family who was cursed by a mysterious entity. The script is an original written by B. Dwayne Craft. Dwayne Craft used outside sources and other students to help him with his process. Due to this unique process of a teacher, student, and historical collaboration, all of the advanced production show has been unique