A virtual performance

There is no stage this year, but the LN play will still take place through an online recording

A+virtual+performance

Elizabeth Coats, Managing Editor

The stage is empty. The intricate sets have been abandoned. The bright lights are turned off . Despite the deserted theater, the cast is still busily working on their lines behind the scenes. Senior Renee Preston is one of the members diligently working on their lines and improving daily.

“Practicing lines isn’t difficult once you’ve found a way that works for you. Personally, I memorize one line at a time, always starting at the beginning as I add on. I also practice saying the lines in character because making specific vocal choices at certain words helps me memorize as well,” Preston said.

Preston will be one of the two hosts for this year’s play “10 Ways to Survive Life in Quarantine.” It follows two narrators observing the strange ways people are coping with being in quarantine.

“The play is about students who have been forced into creative ways to entertain themselves while in quarantine. I think it’s a show that will let people laugh when they will need it,” theater director Kameron McBride said.

With the limitations from COVID-19 the theater had to find other methods to still be able to perform a production while adhering to the safety guidelines. Instead
of in-person auditions, students had to submit videos of themselves performing monologues. Rehearsals this year have been moved to Zoom in order to maintain social distancing.

“We’ve been pulling kids in groups to rehearse individually on Zoom. They then go through their monologue and get notes from myself and the student
directors,” McBride said.

The Zoom rehearsals do not allow for a close-knit cast in comparison to previous productions.

“Each person gets the director’s full attention in rehearsals since there are no other students. It definitely doesn’t allow for the same feeling of getting to know our
cast, ” Preston said.

Despite the lack of interaction between cast members, rehearsals are still effective.

“I think that the rehearsal process is as good as any other rehearsal, as long as you know your lines and when to speak it’s all good. When we rehearse over Zoom, we act as if we are actually performing the scene,” junior Bayron Gomez said.

Online theater may seem difficult, but this play was designed to be done virtually. Each cast member will act out their monologue and record it individually in their own homes. Their videos will then be sent to McBride who will edit them together.

“This play was made to be performed online and I’m certain that this is the perfect time to perform a play like this in a setting where we all have to be separated and I
believe that the audience will enjoy it,” Gomez said.

Being online has caused some of the actors to get creative with their performances in order to keep the audience engaged.

“I feel like not being on stage has actually led to a lot more creativity than if it had been onstage, even if it is a different kind of creativity. All the actors have had to be
creative with how they keep the audience engaged through a screen instead of right in front of them. But I think each actor has done that well, and each in their own way,” Preston said.

Even though the cast is learning new ways to engage the audience, being able to be energetic throughout their individual monologues is difficult.

“I think being online affects the performance in that the actors have much less energy to respond to than if it were in person,” Preston said.

Each of the cast members have been working hard towards creating this production despite the circumstances.

“I believe that the performance is going to go really well, I’m confident in everyone who’s involved hard work,” Gomez said.

“The kids have been working really hard and doing great work. It will be a good show by the time everyone is able to see it,” McBride said

While performing online has affected the production, Preston believes that it will still be entertaining.

“I have no doubt that we will still produce a great show,” Preston said.