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From Earth Science to the Exitprise

During my tenure at CLHS I have taught several types of classes. Most of the time I instructed students as a Science Department member. Whether it was Earth Science or Biology, my favorite units were ones where I could showcase God’s creative genius. Units covering Creation/Evolution were the best of the best. One of the joys of teaching came to fruition this year as a former student of mine revealed to me that it was due to that Creation/Evolution unit which moved him away from atheism to at least acknowledging that there just might be a God. The Holy Spirit completed the job in his junior religion class, and he is now a solid Christian.

One of my other favorite times is being a play director. As I began directing plays, I noted that the dialogue was funny, but the staging was not great. Or the opposite would occur. So my Drama Head suggested I try writing my own. Wow! So I wrote a Sherlock Holmes type of play for children’s audiences in mind. He read it and liked it. Since then I have been scripting my own plays.

Interestingly enough, it was that very first one I wrote which a publishing company bought. I now have four scripts out there. I even got to see an area high school put one of them on. The cast was thrilled to meet the playwright. Most of them commented how hilarious it was. I actually am funnier when I write than when I pun during lecture.

This year I am producing one of my favorites, “Star Wreck.” It is based more on Star Trek – TOS (The Original Series) that ran for three years on TV during the late 60s, but has spawned a multitude of books, a cartoon series, and recent movies. Merged with this classic favorite of mine is another well known science fiction series, Star Wars. Some say that one cannot mix the two classics. You will just have to witness it yourself on May 6 at 7:30 p.m. or May 7 at 2 p.m.

The Exitprise is on a routine mission when a stray radio message alerts Capt. Cork and Mr. Spoke of a new alien race’s existence. Causing problems are the ever-present antagonists for the United Federalization of Planets crews – the Clingeeze! Trying to use time travel to solve the dilemma plunges the Exitprize into the Entertainment Universe. This realm contains many characters from the 1936 Flash Gordon film series to TV’s Lost in Space show as well as members of the Forbidden Planet film. It is here that Star Wars fans will see the likes of Han Trio (He is tired of going it solo.), Princess Freetoelaya, and the evil Dark Vater.

The play ends with the good guys winning as usual, and the Clingeeze leave to expand their empire elsewhere. There is a bit of a surprise at the end, so stay tuned!

If one listens carefully, I have inserted about 12 Star Trek show titles into the script, with Cork saying most of them.

Hope to see you there and be ready to laugh out loud at this send up of a very popular genre and TV incarnation.

To God alone be the Glory!

Chris Gieschen
Biology Teacher and Drama Playwright

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