On February 15, I went to see The Wolves by Sarah DeLappe. This play was centered on an indoor girls soccer team called the Wolves. The audience only knows the characters from the numbers on their jerseys. The girls, who are in their junior year of high school, debate current topics and issues during their pre-game warmups. The girls converse on the topic of teen pregnancy, the Mexico-U.S. border, and even the ethical concerns of the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia. Each subsequent interaction between the characters allows the audience to see how the unity of the team changes across time. These interactions include one girl’s use of Plan B and the ensuing rumors that her teammates create. This performance did not feel like a play, but rather an accurate depiction of how teenage girls view the world around them and how the world perceives them.
This performance relates to leadership studies because it highlights how intergroup dynamics shape human interaction. Every character desires to be heard and listened to in a noisy group of teenagers. In large groups, one can see that all the weaknesses and strengths of each individual make up the group’s meaning. No matter the calmness or rationality of the leader, there are certain individuals who speak out against their leader’s decisions. This play highlights the fact that social groups must determine their own collective meaning for success. The reason for many of the aggressive interactions in this performance is the fact that each person feels that they are not valued and do not have influence over anything. A common experience helps to bind this group together and this group learns to unify themselves. Overall, this play was very fascinating because it showed the power of team communication in verbal and physical ways.