Month: October 2017

Spamalot

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Arthurian legend has been an influential part of literature throughout the years. It has inspired books, TV shows, movies, and even plays. A popular version of such legend, is the movie entitled Monty Python and the Holy Grail. This particular adaptation has been adapted one step further into a musical play entitled Spamalot.

After speaking with Sean Tormey (senior), who will be playing King Arthur in the Saturday night showing of the show, he described the show as “King Arthur’s journey across England in search of knights for his army to help him find the Holy Grail.”

He went on to paint a wonderful picture of the the crazy adventure the characters and audience will journey through together during the length of the play. The “killer rabbit, the horrible knights of Ni, and some stubborn French taunters” all have their part as Arthur breaks through the fourth wall and his knights are forced to put on a Broadway show in order to complete their task of obtaining the Holy Grail.

Anyone who is a fan of the Monty Python films, or parodies in general, should most certainly stop by the show and enjoy the talent our drama department has to offer. Audience members should be prepared for singing and adventures as soon as the show begins!

Spamalot will be shown on Friday, October 27th, 2017 and Saturday, October 28th, 2017 at the Lake Howell High School auditorium. Ticket prices are $5 at the door.\

By: Hannah Baird

U.S. Open

The U.S. Open is the 4th and final major tennis tournament of the year. The other major tournaments include The Australian Open, The French Open, and Wimbledon. The U.S. Open is played on hard courts in Flushing Meadows, New York. At these major events, women must win best 2 out of 3, 6-game sets. The men musts win best 3 out 5, 6-game sets. These matches often become incredibly long, lasting 3 or more hours.

The 2017 U.S. Open had many withdrawals, leaving the draw wide open and giving opportunities to many new and younger players. Famous names including Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray, both previous champions, did not participate this year.

Serena Williams has been out of competition for the majority of 2017 expecting her first child. She won the Australian Open in January while being 10 weeks pregnant! On September 1, Serena gave birth to her daughter, Alexis Olympia Ohanian. Serena Williams is planning to returning to professional competition in 2018.

Interestingly, old fan favorites Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer have been the only players to win majors this year. It has been amazing to see the two of them competing at this high level even as they age into their mid to late 30’s.

Maria Sharapova competed in her first major since her lengthy ban for the use of the controversial drug Meldonium. She defeated the world number two Simona Halep in the first round, and continued her momentum through to the 4th round. She is a previous champion here and is close to returning back into the top-100 in the world.

The eventual champions of this tournament were Rafael Nadal and Sloane Stephens. Rafael Nadal won his 3rd U.S. Open and 16th overall major title. He has also recently returned to the world number one. Sloane Stephens captured her 1st ever major title this year. She had been out for over a year with a foot injury, and her ranking dropped as low as 900. With this win, she is back in the top 30!

By: Katie Groves

Silver Regiment

Whether it’s during halftime or at competitions, the Silver Regiment is always working hard to impress with their shows.
The Silver Regiment travels across the state to compete their marching show and always returns with awards to show for their hard work. In past years, the band program has taken home multiple Grand Champion awards and is a 2 time bronze medalist at state championships. This year, The band doesn’t expect anything different.
This years show is called “Bached In”. Bached in is a play on words to put a name to a show all about Bach’s classical music. The show mostly comprises of Bach composing of Little Fugue in G Minor.
“We’re not quite done putting together the show but so far it looks and feels really good! We’re getting great reactions from those following the show and can’t wait till it’s really ready to go!”
The band has not started It’s competition season yet but, It’s coming up quickly and The Silver Regiment has been out on the field constantly trying to make everything as comfortable as possible.
“I think that there’s a lot of behind the scenes work that not a lot of people realize” says Brandon Hill (Senior) “If we’re not outside working on the marching, we’re inside repping music everyday. We work really hard to put this on the field and we all really appreciate the support from the school.”
Come support this award winning and hard working program at the football games this season as well as around the state!
Picture by Nikki Dumm

Westworld Review

 

Imagine, a world in which you may enter and explore every depraved and honorable desire that has ever seized your attention. An arena in which the execution of such desires comes as easily as breathing, and your peers similarly indulge their own unwound imaginations so that they cannot cast judgement upon another’s method of satiation nor have it cast upon them. A place where fantasies of all colors and avenues can be exacted. An escape where you may appease impulses of lust, crime, heroism, avarice, vices and virtues and all roads in-between without consequence or lasting responsibility. A haven of sin so that it cannot exist. And then you can leave, returning to the real world and its mundane normalcy.

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That type of world is Westworld. It is explored in the HBO drama Westworld, based off of the 1973 movie of the same name. The show explores a near-future historical reimagination that wonderfully blends the crisp stylization of a modern world with the natural awe-evoking grittiness of the western era. Westworld itself is an adult theme park set in the Wild West and populated by the hosts, hyper-humanoid animatronics programmed to adhere to certain narratives. The guests, once they pay an expectedly exorbitant admission fee, immerse themselves into park and engage in the scripted narratives that each host is looped on or create their own adventures in the lawless land. The premise, of course, is genius and allows for an incredible analysis into the boundaries (or lack thereof) of consciousness and humanity in both the android and human characters.

The stellar cast—headed by the incredible talents of Anthony Hopkins (Dr. Ford, the creative director and creator of the park), Eddie Harris (The Man in Black, a mysterious guest who is a veteran of the park), Jeffrey Wright (Bernard, a programing specialist and Head of Behavior for the park), Thandie Newton (Maeve, a host who breaks her narrative of running a brothel)—is lauded highly and for good reason, for their intriguing portrayal of complex characters whose motivations and histories are largely a mystery from us is a task not often completed let alone done with such mastery. As expected for such a renowned television program, the writing and directing are superb; whereas some shows turn to spectacle to engage an audience, the creators of this show turn to cerebral, thought-provoking dialogue that strikes both poles of the soul—the mind and the heart—often at the same moments. The technical side of Westworld is also of a high caliber, for while the aforementioned practitioners of their craft received merely (but well-deserved) nominations from the just-concluded 2017 Primetime Emmy’s, those behind the magic of sound mixing, hairstyling, make-up, production design, main title design, cinematography, sound editing, picture editing, and casting were additionally nominated and (for the first three categories) a few garnered the winged award. There are certain classes under which series’ will fall under, and despite there only being one season (season two premieres in 2018), Westworld is of a distinctively higher quality than most.

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The core of the story, as alluded to earlier, is the enthralling exploration of the search for and result of what is referred to as “The Maze” (the path to consciousness). Dolores Abernathy (played by the captivating Evan Rachel Wood) and Maeve Millay, two hosts in considerably disparate narrative loops, each have arcs that deal with the realization that there is a maze. The former is aided by two guests, William (played by Jimmi Simpson, a first-time guest hesitant of the park at first but later resolved to help Dolores) and Logan (played by Ben Barnes, a frequent guest well-acquainted with the indulgences there are to be had), and is centered in the park. The latter is (reluctantly) assisted by two low-level host cleaners (they essentially refurbish the hosts after they are killed as a product of their narratives or of guests). There is another who searches for the maze, however, and that is the Man in Black, an incredibly mysterious and stone-cold stockholder of the park who aims to find the secrets left behind by Arnold Weber, Dr. Ford’s friend and co-creator of Westworld. Dr. Ford, Bernard Lowe, and the other high-level officials that run the park, on the other hand, are preoccupied with assessing and rectifying the causes of malfunctioning hosts (those who had somehow gotten too close to the center of the maze and were unable to comprehend their own comprehension of their own self) that no longer followed basic protocols such as the inability to hurt any non-host intentionally. Behind the ostensible world presented before us, however, there are subtle hints that there is a greater game behind the scenes—a sort of maze that the storytelling builds for us.  The center of the maze for the audience, then, cannot be consciousness but may be a greater understanding of such consciousness; we may come to realize, as the Man in Black said, that we are most ourselves when presented with trauma. Trauma is a recurring theme throughout the episodes, lurking in plain sight as the answer to that which cannot be solved. The unique presentation and scrutiny of such intelligent concepts and themes that the premise and exceptional cast and crew allow for are what distinguishes Westworld from the expanse of narratives already concerning themselves with the pursuit of introspection and understanding.

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And the marvelous ideas and the underlying answers and hidden revelations are all wound up in this elaborate bow that we begin to untie in the first episode—confused but enticed—until the final two episodes in which we succeed and learn the truth behind the secrets that taunted us while finding another, more elaborate bow as the present inside. The twists of this show—while one will attempt to guess them and often will succeed—are so satisfying. A good twist is not crafted on unpredictability alone, but mostly plausibility. The seeds are planted in the early episodes and we practically tend to their growth throughout until we realize, just as the storytellers usher us to, that we’ve been watching a sunflower seed birth an African elephant; two binaries that we are given and reminded are separate entities are revealed to be one whole, shattering our illusions and awakening us to the reality the maze offers. And that is the point of the show: to awaken us to this “maze” as we follow the characters who try to do the same. To display a world in which this maze is the foundation and purpose, where despite locked destinies the effect of trauma is as visceral and far-reaching as it is in the real one. To show that the random and all-encompassing nature of trauma is not something to fear but rather appreciate, for it grounds us in a consciousness greater than that of the bicameral mind. Imagine, a show in which the very acquisition and functionality of consciousness is depicted through the interconnected plots of real, human characters whether programmed or not while still maintaining the conventional purpose of any show: to entertain.

That type of show is Westworld.

Rating: 4.6 Violent Ends for 5 Violent Delights

By: Ryan Hill

Photo Credits to HBO

Girls Basketball

Lake Howell girls basketball team is on a rampage! On September, 20th the team improved their record to 6-0, beating the Hagerty Huskies by a score of 46-36. The team’s lead scorer Re’yanna Jones continued going off and scored a huge 21 points. The Hawks team chemistry against the Huskies was incredible, almost flawless.

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Isabell Morales (Junior), Captain, had a few words to say about the season thus far. “The season so far has been great. The teams working together really well and it’s just been so fun.” She went on to explain that “Taking a leadership role in this team has become a really big part of [her] life, it’s hard to explain, but what [she] knows for sure [she] loves everything about this team.”

Re’yanna Jones (Junior), Captain, spoke a few words about her hopes for the rest of the season. “We really couldn’t of asked for a better start to the season. Going undefeated first 6 games has been amazing, but if we keep working hard and continue growling as a team i think we can go undefeated the whole season, And hopefully win states, but for now we’re all focused on the next game because they’re all important.”

Come out and support the Lady Hawks in their upcoming games as they try to keep their undefeated streak going! Go Hawks!

By: Tomas Roosen

Gender Equality Club

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Elizabeth Loschiavo (12th Grade) President

For those who have never been to a meeting, how you describe GEC? 

“I think that GEC is a safe, open diverse place where all students and community members can come and share their experiences in general. You don’t have to be a certain race or gender or anything to join the club, it is just a place where you can feel safe to tell other people and learn about disparities in general.”
What are some misconceptions about the club you would like to clear up?

“So, feminism is a very controversial topic in greater society and many people misconstrue it as misandry, which is when women hate men and that they want to be superior to men and that is the opposite of what this club is about. This club is truly the same as its name, gender equality, we’re not here for one gender to be superior over the other, we’re just here to raise awareness of the disparities that occur between genders whether it’s between women and men or the binary (women and men) or the nonbinary.”

Besides discussions, what else does this club have to offer?

“I think it’s a great learning tool for people to get information to get facts about gender disparities that they can use and raise awareness themselves. They can use what they learned in the club to try and introduce their peers, their family members, the people that they have relationships with, to the world of feminism to teach people what they learned about in the club.”
What message do you want GEC to spread around the school? 

“I just hope that people understand that we’re trying to get out there is that feminism is not a bad thing, it’s not something you should be afraid and it’s not something that you should dislike. Feminism is truly for all genders. If you believe in gender equality, you are a feminist and that’s the thing that stops people from understanding feminism and understanding the club. I want people to understand that we don’t value women less than we value men. We value everyone equally and everyone can contribute to club and society equally and that’s the message that I’m trying to make sure everyone understands.”
What are some topics covered in the club and what are some future topics that you’re gonna discuss?

“Some subjects that we have covered the year before and previously, one being bread and butter issues, pay equity, and we plan to cover maternity leave and paternity leave because they are both equally important. We’ve also talked about toxic masculinity and hyper-masculinity and how that’s harmful to men and their body image. We’ve talked about the over-sexualization of women and girls in media and how it creates this image of being perfect and how it’s that harmful to young girls as well as to young boys because it sets the expectation that no one really, unless you have amazing genetics, can meet. We’ve also talked about rape culture, which is obviously a very sensitive topic, but it’s something that we felt that needed to be talked about.”
How often do you guys meet and when?

“We meet once a month and that’s either an event type meeting or it’s a discussion meeting where I’ll be presenting a presentation on a PowerPoint. We meet every first Tuesday of the month and we met in Mr. Agagnina’s room right after school. Room 1-123 and our next meeting is October 3rd.”

 

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Ally Sickles (11th Grade) Vice President
For those who have never been to meeting, how you describe GEC?

“GEC is a group of intersectional people who want to promote and talk about gender equality, as well as gender inequality, while providing a safe place for attendees and members to share their experiences and thoughts on various topics that we cover.”
What are some misconceptions about the club you would like to clear up?

“We are most definitely not a group of man-haters who sit around after school complaining about the patriarchy and the male race. It’s not even close!”
Besides discussions what else does this club have to offer?

“We’re an intersectional club- we welcome all to a place of no judgments. We offer a group of passionate individuals who care and want to grow and share. We’re a safe place!”
What message do you want GEC to spread around the school?

“Feminism is not misandry or belittling men- feminism is gender equality. Also, gender inequality is a very prevalent, and important, issue all over the world, even in modern society. It affects every single person; not just women.”
What are some topics covered in the club and what are some future topics that you’re gonna discuss?

“Our main lesson that we focus on is intersectionality, which I explained earlier! We cover gender inequality in terms of pay, rape culture, hypersexualization of men and women in media, gender inequality in mental health, and a whole plethora of other topics. At the beginning of the year, we asked members, old and new, what they wanted to learn this year, so we’re creating lessons based on what they want!
Any additional comments about GEC? We’re very excited about this year, as well as all the passion in the club! We hope this club keeps on growing as it is!”

By: Alexa Cavarlez 

Las Vegas Massacre

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On the night of Sunday, October 1st, Las Vegas fell victim to the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. A man since identified as Stephen Paddock opened fire on a crowd of concert attendees at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, killing at least 59 people and injuring at least 527 others. People suffered from gunshot wounds and stampede injuries as 22,000 attempted to flee from the shooter.

Stephen Paddock was a 64-year-old man with no criminal record besides a routine citation from several years ago. According to his family, Paddock was “not a normal guy,” but had indicated nothing about any plans or motives for the shooting. Eric Paddock, Stephen’s brother, said he is “horrified” and “dumbfounded” by what he did. So far, Paddock has not been connected with any terrorist groups, although ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack, according to CBS news. Police believe Paddock acted alone, and have not yet determined his motive.

Paddock was found dead in his hotel room, believed by Las Vegas police to have killed himself before they could reach him. Also in his hotel room were 23 firearms, including a handgun and multiple rifles. In a report from CNN news, authorities announced that thousands of rounds of ammunition and ammonium nitrate, a material used to make explosives, in his car and at his home in Mesquite, Nevada, about 75 miles away from Las Vegas.

Thankfully, many citizens are offering all their help to aid Las Vegas in recovering from this tragedy. Hundreds of Nevadans have lined up to donate blood to U.S. blood banks for those injured in the shooting, waiting in lines as long as 6 hours–and officials in Las Vegas say that no more blood is needed right now. Steve Sisolak, Chair of the Clark County Commission, has set up a GoFundMe page for the families of the victims. As of Monday, October 9th, the page has collected over $10 million in donations for the victims and families affected by the shooting and is still going strong.

By: Rachel Smith

Photo credit to David Becker