From that time on, the world was hers for the reading....

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

E. Lockhart: Dramarama

I don't know what attracted me to Dramarama by E. Lockhart more--the title (dramarama is one of my favorite ways to describe friend drama, especially online friend drama) or the musical theater content (I'm a musical theater geek). Either way, I knew I had to read it. And I knew I'd enjoy it!


Two theater-mad, self-invented
fabulositon Ohio teenagers.
One boy, one girl.
One gay, one straight.
One black, one white.
It's a season of hormones,
gold lame,
hissy fits,
jazz hands,
song and dance,
true love,
and unitards
that will determine their future
--and test their friendship.

The narrator Sadye (also known as Sarah Paulson) and her best friend Demi (also known as Douglas B. Howard, Jr.) share a love for musicals and a desire to get out of Brenton, Ohio, where everyone is too "vanilla."

They know that their best chance to escape boring hometown life and unleash their "lurking bigness" is to audition for the Wildewood Academy For the Performing Arts Summer Theater Program (drama camp).

They are accepted and, as the title says, drama ensues.

Demi is over-the-top talented, yearning for first kisses and first love, and gay.

Sadye doesn't quite have the level of talent that the rest of the Wildewood students possess, but she's a good dancer and very smart (sometimes too smart for her own good).

Demi lands a few leads in the summer productions, relishes the opportunity to learn from the best, and feels like he's found where he belongs. He fits in.

Sadye lands a few supporting roles, questions the teachers, and makes suggestions to the directors. She doesn't quite fit in.

Dramarama is an excellent behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to put together a show. Through Sadye's narration (an authentic voice, thanks to Lockhart's experiences at drama camp), the reader learns about acting exercises, running lines, costume fittings, rehearsals, and staging. Between that and the constant pop culture/theater references, it's a theater lover's dream!

Though Dramarama revolves around theater and putting on a show, the heart of the story is friendship and finding where you belong. The storytelling is slick and mature, making it something that both teenagers and adults will enjoy.

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