A Student Publication of Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, CA


A Student Publication of Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, CA


A Student Publication of Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, CA


Theater is where it all starts

For these three student directors, their story starts at Mt. SAC
Anthony Solorzano
Illustration by Anthony Solorzano

Mt. SAC is the first step for many students with grand aspirations. It is the first goal to be marked completed by students motivated to continue crossing off objectives. Within the theater department, students take the stage with a dream of becoming the next Hollywood star.

This fall semester, the department gave students the opportunity to lead a production of three one-acts, completely led by the student body. Students were in charge of set designing, acting and directing. “I feel like it all starts in the theater,” fire technology major Nicholas Fregoso, 22, said. “And if you can’t do it in the theater then you’re not going to be able to do it on the camera.”

Fregoso directed the one-act “The Actress.” His dream of telling human stories started in high school when he visualized himself as a director and being a positive motivation for those who come to the movies to escape reality. “I think it’s important to continuously be that light [for people].”

In order to project that positivity, Fregoso drew inspiration from the honest relationships in his life and movies. “I always just take from movies and try to connect them to real-life events,” Fregoso said.

As soon as Fregoso finishes his work on “The Actress,” he plans to turn his attention back to working on his feature film. He will be directing a script he co-wrote under his own production company Not No Production.

“I just want to continue to direct and just continue to be that light people need,” Fregoso said.

Theater major Mikayla Nance, 21, plans to move back to New York. Nance directed “The Game,” the second act of the night. “Next thing I will do will be acting,” Nance said. “But I do want to do more directing if given the opportunity.”

Nance started off as an actress, but directors often noticed her way of thinking matched a director’s mindset, “… the ideas naturally lead you to directing.”

Her dream started at an early age when her dad showed her “The Little Shop of Horror.” Nance remembers telling her dad she wanted to do exactly what had just seen. Since then, she tried to be like some of the stars she would idolize, “I knew I wanted to do it from [a young age.]”

Nance’s play “The Game,” follows three men partaking in a game where they shout “This is my land. It is mine. It is beautiful, and it is mine,” anytime a light turns on. Her work leans on the abstract. “It’s like really organized chaos,” Nance said. “I have a picture in my mind. I’m deliberate about where I place things.”

Daisy Kaur prefers to immerse the audience into a whole world. Theater major Kaur, 27, directed a stage adaptation of Edgar Alan Poe’s “The Tell-tale Heart.” Her style derives from watching Indian soap operas and her production’s reflected the early years of watching melodramas.

Kaur likes to create worlds. Her work emphasizes details. Like Nance, teachers noticed Kaur’s way of thinking matching a director’s mindset but she will always be an actress. “It’s easier being an actor,” Kaur said. “But I like both, honestly… there’s a lot more effort [to directing].”

When Kaur is conceptualizing a new production, she draws from the movies she watches. If she sees an element she likes, she attempts to create her take on the image and elaborate. “Sometimes you see a story and you’re like, ‘this could be interpreted way better.” Kaur added, “That kind of drives you to change things.”

Kaur’s next step is a theater conservatory and hopes to work in film.

Before their names shine bright on the marquee, these young directors will continue to blossom on the Mt. SAC stage.

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