The cast and crew of this year’s Upper School fall play made ICS history last weekend, proving that the show WILL go on, as they performed three one-act plays and a series of student-written monologues in Indian Creek’s first ever outdoor, physically-distanced, masked production.
Typically, the grades 9-12 fall production sees paint drying on sets before opening night, a team of 20 or more minions making sure sound, lights, and props are ready to go, volunteers selling tickets and refreshments, and a small army of parents helping with costumes. The production consists of dedicated, talented students, supported by a dedicated, talented community, making memories together. This year, the grades 9-12 fall production saw actors wearing masks with clear vinyl coverings, audience members viewing the show from within circles spray-painted on the ground, emergency port-o-pots placed in the parking lot, and even a snake slithering through center-stage at dress rehearsal. This year’s production consisted of dedicated, talented students, supported by a dedicated, talented community, making memories together.
The cast, crew, and directors were ecstatic that they had the opportunity to work together, adapting to ever-changing circumstances to create a production that represents their perspective as teenagers during this moment in time. They were thrilled to be able to proudly showcase this work in front of a live audience through two performances last Saturday, November 14, and Sunday, November 15.
The 20+ students involved in this year’s production worked hard, rehearsing difficult works virtually and pulling the show together on stage in just a few “in-person” rehearsals.
The guiding principles of theater at Indian Creek Upper School is to choose works that will inspire students to think in new ways and challenge them have difficult conversations. As Director Matt McCormick shared, “We strongly believe that theater opens doors for conversations between students and the community that surrounds them in safe and often new ways. This year we first went to the cast to ask them what themes are important to them, and then we sought shows to reflect their choices." Co-Director Jill Woodward agreed. "We hope that the actors and audience will listen to the words the characters speak, think about what the playwrights and student-writers want us to hear, and then talk about it with their families.”
The first one-act play the students performed was called “Fighting Demons,” by Angela Hill. In this experimental dramatic scene, 10 teenagers find themselves trapped in a world where they fight their own “demons,” which each represented an issue that young adults may face. The second one-act show was taken from a collection of plays titled Facing Our Truth: Ten Minute Plays on Trayvon, Race, and Privilege. In this scene, three young people weigh both the potentially liberating privileges and the potentially deadly consequences of being just “some other kid.” For the final one-act, the actors lightened the mode, performing a comedic work called, “Juliet and this Guy Romeo.” This play used the structure of Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” to skewer the contemporary online animosity between adult liberals and conservatives and illustrated the way in which young people around them view their behavior.
In between each one-act piece, students performed a series of monologues that were each written by the student performing them. The works addressed issues close to high-school students’ hearts. These included Caitlin Stamper’s “Hindsight,” Jaiden Coulter’s “InstaLesson,” Madelyn Mixter’s “Finding Me,” Cheyenne Thomas’ “The Test,” Arnia Goode’s “The Outsider,” Ava Andrews’ “Retirement,” and Julia Argilan’s “Goldfish.”