Drama Club’s First-ever Fall Show Video Now Available for Viewing

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Rachel Staffier ('21), Orbit Contributor

While COVID-19 poses a threat to the normalcy of many extracurriculars, the RMHS Drama Club has used their creativity to create a COVID-friendly film experience with the passion that their show must go on.

For their fall season, the RMHS Drama Club is performing Act Up! Theatrical Activism from the Bard to Broadway. The musical, which was written and directed by RMHS drama teacher and Drama Club adviser Ms. Cunha, consists of monologues, scenes from some of Shakespeare’s greatest works, musical solos, and duets from several Broadway shows. As a whole, Act Up! looks into the historical and modern-day role that the theater plays as a voice for social justice.

A typical drama production at RMHS requires long hours rehearsing in the school performing arts center followed by several performances to large, unmasked crowds. This year though, the drama club is faced with the challenge of fighting the spread of a global pandemic, and instead of surrendering, they decided to take a whole new approach by creating a film that allows everyone–the cast, crew, and audience–to be safe. According to cast member Jennifer Wheeler (’21) the cast usually had rehearsals for Act Up! Over Zoom, “I was only in-person for Drama Club meeting twice, both of which were to record clips for the final show.” 

The cast and crew, amounting to almost sixty students, have been working tirelessly with director Cunha, musical director and RMHS fine and performing arts department head Ms. Wentlent, choreographer Katie Donovan, film director and RMHS video production teacher Ms. Cuevas, and costume designer Erline Trites over the past several weeks. Over Zoom, they have been rehearsing, designing costumes, creating tech plans, recording music, and filming their performances. On Friday, December 4th at 7:00 pm the film was released for viewing; it will be accessible online until midnight on Friday, December 11th. 

Tickets for the show will be available online at the RMHS Drama Club website. Prices range from fifteen to sixty dollars depending on how many people are expected to view the film in each household that makes a purchase. A link to the film will be included in ticket confirmation emails. Of course, this method relies on the honors system, but it must be taken into consideration how important ticket purchases are for the funding of the Drama Club and the support of this art form as well as the students’ passion to pursue it.

Needless to say, purchasing tickets will also allow families to experience the talent of RMHS Drama Club members and be immersed in such a powerful and unique theatrical experience.