North Central College - Naperville, IL

North Central College students stage contemporary comedy “Distracted” Oct. 20-23

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North Central College presents “Distracted,” a thought-provoking comedy about parents and the tough choices they face.

Four performances of “Distracted” will be presented at 7:30 p.m. Oct. 20, 21 and 22 and at 2 p.m. Oct. 23 in North Central College’s Madden Theatre at the Fine Arts Center, 171 E. Chicago Ave., Naperville. Tickets are $10/adults and $8/students and senior citizens; call the North Central College Box Office at 630-637-SHOW (7469) or visit

Directed by Carin Silkaitis, assistant professor of theatre at North Central College, “Distracted” provides an underlying commentary concerning an over-medicated society. Jesse is what some parents would call “a handful.” Getting the 8-year-old to go to school is a hassle, and his teacher, Mrs. Holly, has had enough of the distractions he causes. Convinced that he has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Mrs. Holly sparks a quest for Jesse’s parents to confirm a diagnosis for his condition.

Jesse’s parents bounce from one professional opinion to another, seeing everyone from a child psychologist to an allergist. The choice between medicating or not becomes blurred in this powerful comedy by playwright Lisa Loomer as the parents realize the same qualities that disrupt others may be the same that make a person inventive and imaginative.

Following the Thursday opening night performance, psychology and theatre faculty will host an optional Q&A talk-back to discuss the issues and questions raised in the play.

The cast for “Distracted” features (role, actor, town, year, major):

Mama: Hannah Toriumi of Riverside, a senior double majoring in theatre and psychology
Dr. Zavala, Waitress, Carolyn: Rachael Hancz of Coldwater, Mich., a senior majoring in theatre
Natalie: Chloe Mokadam of Buffalo, N.Y., a sophomore majoring in theatre
Mrs. Holly, Dr. Waller, Nurse: Daryn Harrell of Peoria, a senior majoring in musical theatre
Dad: Evan Michalic of Elburn, a sophomore majoring in theatre
Dr. Broder, Dr. Karnes, Actor: Hywel Griffith of Pontypridd, Wales, a senior majoring in theatre
Sherry: Savanna Richardson of Terre Haute, Ind., a sophomore majoring in musical theatre
Vera: Grace Heimerl of Naperville, a junior majoring in musical theatre
Jesse: Jack Detwiler of Warrenville, a seventh-grader at St. Irene Catholic School

North Central College offers majors in theatre or musical theatre and a minor in dance. A full range of acting and dance classes is available, as well as opportunities to direct a full-length production. Students of all majors can participate in musical and nonmusical performances, actor showcases and one-act plays and performances in the College’s four theatre venues. Full-time professors and active professionals who are artist-teachers serve as faculty. Visit to learn more about studying theatre at North Central College. 

USG Corporation and Navistar, Inc. are underwriting sponsors of North Central College’s 2011-2012 Sesquicentennial Fine & Performing Arts Season. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council, a state agency. This performance is one of many ongoing programs at North Central College to enrich and broaden the cultural and academic outlook for the College and community. North Central offers a variety of venues accommodating a rich range of local and world-class events, performances and space needs for the public. For a comprehensive schedule of musical performances, theatrical and dance productions, art exhibits and lectures, visit or call the box office at 630-637-SHOW (7469).

Founded in 1861 and celebrating its Sesquicentennial in 2011, North Central College is an independent, comprehensive college of the liberal arts and sciences that offers more than 55 undergraduate majors and graduate programming in six areas. With more than 3,000 undergraduate and graduate students, North Central College is committed to academic excellence, a climate that emphasizes leadership, ethics, values and service, a curriculum that balances job-related knowledge with a liberal arts foundation and a caring environment with small classes. Visit to learn more.