Middle school play will humorously depict internet distractions

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The MFL MarMac Middle School Drama Department will present the play “The Internet is Distract—Oh Look, a Kitten!” on Friday and Saturday, March 13 and 14. The cast includes (front, left to right) Mackenzie Bachman, Ava Goltz, Maria Stavroplus, Katelyn Gerndt, Ava Kishman, Makayla Morrissey, Amelya Weigand, Isabella Torkelson; (middle) Karlie Hagensick, Amara Buchheit, Kaylee Nuehring, Mindy Keehner, Clare Grau, Ella Corlett, Chylie Feuerhelm; (back) Hailea Pritchard, Addison Buchheit, Olivia Martins, Ruby Koeller and Aedan Whitney. Not pictured are Megan Beisner, Abe Hanson and Holden Mathis. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

“The Internet is Distract—Oh Look, a Kitten” centers around Taylor (right), played by Mindy Keehner, who’s trying to finish a book report on “The Great Gatsby” but keeps getting distracted by websites and apps. Each website or app is humorously portrayed by a student who provides insight into how they work. Mackenzie Bachman (left) takes on the role of Gmail.

Kaylee Nuehring, as the character Taylor, spends the play FaceTiming with her best friend Micah.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

It’s a scenario many people have encountered: “You go online for one thing,” said Mindy Keehner, “then you end up doing five other things.”

The premise is one Keehner and other MFL MarMac middle school students will humorously showcase this weekend through the play “The Internet is Distract—Oh Look, a Kitten!” Performances will be held at 7 p.m. in the high school auditorium in Monona on both Friday and Saturday, March 13 and 14. 

Director Michelle Hontz said she discovered the play through her co-director, Karla Hanson, whose son had seen it and thought it was funny.

“We thought it would be a great one since it relates to the kids a lot with the usage of the internet and all the apps and being distracted so much,” she explained.

Written by Ian McWethy, “The Internet is Distract—Oh Look, a Kitten!” centers around a student named Micah, played by Keehner, who’s trying to finish a book report about the F. Scott Fitzgerald novel “The Great Gatsby.” In between FaceTiming her best friend Taylor, portrayed by Kaylee Nuehring, Micah gets sidetracked on the internet while searching for information.

“Nina Benson is somebody who’s supposed to know the answers to the questions she has, so she goes on Tinder, Facebook, Twitter, those types of things, to find her,” Hontz said. “It ties in a lot of the modern apps that are used.”

“Micah is in her bedroom when she’s using it, and I am too,” Nuehring detailed.

There, Keehner said, she also encounters Google search, Gmail, Bing, Amazon, SnapChat, games and more.

Aside from being comical, noted Nuehring, “there are some crazy parts, like fight scenes.”

Each website or app is played by a student who provides insight into how they work.

“Google, for example, when you’re searching, it will give you like 10 suggestions when you only have two letters typed in. So the Google character itself is a pretty over-active, hyper character who is like, ‘Ooo, it’s this. Ooo, it’s that,’” Hontz said. “Snapchat is very self-centered because it’s all about selfies. Instagram is all about sharing food photos.”

“People will enjoy seeing it and will laugh because it’s so true,” she added.

Tickets for “The Internet is Distract—Oh Look, a Kitten!” can be purchased at the door.

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