Four central Maine high schools advanced from a field of 81 high schools in the Maine Drama Festival regional competitions this weekend.

Waterville, Lawrence, Winslow and Maine Central Institute will compete March 18 and 19 in the state finals.

Finalists in the Class A division, which includes high schools with at least 525 students, besides Waterville and Lawrence of Fairfield, include Oceanside High School of Rockland, Falmouth High School, Bonny Eagle High School of Standish, Oxford Hills High School, South Portland High School, and Westbrook High School.

Finalists from the Class B division of schools, which includes high schools with 524 students or less, aside from Winslow and MCI of Pittsfield, include Ellsworth High School, Baxter Academy for Technology and Science, Lee Academy, Foxcroft Academy, Mount Desert Island High School, Freeport High School, Lincoln Academy and Lisbon High School.

The students competed at nine regional sites. The finalists will compete March 18 and 19. Class A finalists will compete at Camden Hills Regional High School and Class B will compete at Stearns High School in Millinocket.

Nearly 3,000 students from 81 schools compete in the festival, which is in its 85th year. They present plays from the classics to original student-written productions.

The winner will advance to the New England Drama Festival in Old Saybrook, Connecticut, in April.

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