Harrison High’s ‘The Election’ spoofs American politics

A scandalized student body president, campaign cash, shady political operatives, and plenty of laughs come together in “The Election,” Harrison High’s fall theatre production.

The Election Harrison High School
Political opponents Ben Corsi, left, and Liz Kagan, right, face off during “The Election”.

Written in 2015 by playwright and former teacher Don Zolidis, the show runs Friday, November 30, and Saturday, December 1, 7:30 p.m., in the school auditorium.

The story centers around Mark Davenport, played by Ben Corsi, who is convinced that he’ll easily win a special election to replace a disgraced student body president. When Mark’s opponent, played by Liz Kagan, undergoes a complete makeover with the help of a mysterious Super PAC, the race takes a sharp – and hilarious – turn.

The Election Harrison High School
From left, Justin Bujega, Bryson Martin, and Ben Corsi talk politics in a scene from “The Election.”

Enter Gary, a sleazy campaign manager played by Justin Bugeja. The senior says he had to step way out of character to get into the part.

“I have to be very uptight,” he said. “I spent a lot of time sitting in front of a classroom just being rude. It took a lot of practice.”

Bugeja said the play focuses attention on the role money plays in elections. “It not only influences candidates, but also the media. And the media influences voters.”

Harrison High The Election
The crowd reacts as candidates debate during “The Election”.

Senior Ebony Matthews represents “the media”; she plays a television news analyst. In addition to researching reporters, she uses what she learned by following the 2016 presidential election.

While audiences enjoy the show’s humor, Bujega hopes it will also inspire them to “do their research and make their own decisions.”

“Just vote,” he said. “Make sure you voice your opinion when it matters.”

Tickets for “The Election” are $10 and may be purchased through the box office, 248-888-6274, or at the door.