Since the start of COVID-19, there has been a tremendous toll on the performing arts. Students who used the performing arts as an escape from reality were trapped in a never-ending cycle of being told that nothing was going to be able to happen due to the pandemic. But what happens when you try to take away something from a bunch of music and theater students? We push for what we want, and we get as much of it as we can.
This year, the only courses available in the music department were Select Choir, History of Rock and Music Theory. While it was unfortunate that we could not have a band or general choir class, we were joyful that we could at least have Select Choir. Our singers were able to adapt to the COVID-friendly setting, filming our concerts at home and only being able to hum in the classroom, and sing outside when there was good weather. While at first, this was a challenge, we were able to conquer the technical challenges and thrive with the opportunities given to us. We had two of our students, Lauren Morris and Phoebe Gill, talk to Ms. Richard and Principal Police about making Select Choir an honors credit for the following years to come. And all of the sudden, BAM! Band starts again as a before-school activity in the auditorium. Recently, the state got approval from the CDC to be able to sing inside again. The performing arts students were thrilled to find out that we were getting what was taken away from us back. The next thing to happen was a show, and here it is. Welcome to Alice and Wonderland.
When students first heard that we were going to be performing, we saw the atmosphere change, as if this show filled up the empty spots in the room, and it was the last piece to fit perfectly in the strange, confusing puzzle. I think, at first, none of us knew what we were getting ourselves into. “A performance on Zoom? How is that going to work?” some might question. Well here’s the answer: Put together the minds of Ms. Barnes, Ms. Richard, Amanda Kosloski, Charlie Clute and a bunch of eagerly excited theater students . . . anything is possible.
Rehearsals were very weird at first. Some students live in the auditorium while others are on a screen. Making sure that everyone can hear everyone while we go through our lines. Figuring out during the middle of reading the script that two of your characters are in a scene together. Being kicked out of the Google Meet for technical issues. We had a lot of kinks to work out. Slowly but surely, everything is being put into place. The fantastic Phoebe Gill used her music theory skills to add music to speeches and poem-like monologues for characters to sing, to add more pizazz to our show (because we have to show off all our talents, right?).
We just started at home rehearsals, with lights, microphones and backdrops, getting used to scene changes, music recordings and setting up our props, all while facing the difficulties of home wifi and troublesome technology. As we come close to our first performance, we are all nervous but super excited to be able to perform to the elementary and middle schools in a matinee show on Wednesday, and for the community to see all the hard work we have done these past few months.
Alice in Wonderland is going to be a live performance on Zoom that you can watch in the comfort of your own house! Who wouldn’t want that?!? Our shows are on March 18th, 19th, and 20th at 7:00 pm.
To RSVP to the show, fill out this Google Form (click for the link) to sign up for virtual tickets on your desired show date.