Theater Students Perform For Visiting Elementary Students

Director Caleb VanDoornewaard and cast stage Fruitcakes

After weeks of preparation, the theater program’s Matinee Class put on a successful performance with the help of tech theater students and the director, senior Caleb Van DoorneWaard. 

After the performances, the actors gave some insight into their preparations and feelings about the show.

Sophomore actor Elijah Goodwin tells of his unique way of preparing for a role.

“To prepare for the show, I made a playlist of songs that fit my character,” Goodwin said. ”This helped to get into character and understand Mack better.”

Even after rehearsal, some parts of the performance were nerve-wracking for the actors. Sophomore actor Audrey Remsburger tells of what she found to be the hardest part of the play.

“We weren’t mic’d, so we had to speak really loud. If we weren’t loud enough or forgot our lines, we couldn’t conceal it,” Remsburger said.

But the production was not just about the actors on stage. Behind the scenes, a dedicated team of tech theater students worked hard to create the sets, lighting and sound design that brought the show to life. 

Senior Propmaster and Crew Lead Campbell Miller explains the process that he goes through when he starts to work on a set.

“So first, I have to go through and read the scripts and get a prop list, and then we make all the props for the show,” Miller said. “Then, we have to set up the tables, get everything for the set and make it look pretty.”

While the actors get the spotlight, the tech crew is still respected. Sophomore Reece Parsons shares how she feels the tech crew is portrayed.

“I feel like the actors are always appreciative of the people in tech and vice versa just because we can’t do what we do without them, and they can’t do what they do without us,” Parsons said. “I think most people that aren’t involved in theater don’t consider all the stuff that goes into production outside of the actors, but I still think what we do is really cool.”

Parsons’s view is echoed by Sophomore Kiera Ellsworth as she speaks of her favorite part of the production.

“The part of production that I thought was best this year was probably set design. The set design was really incredible. The sets all worked really well. They were placed well on the stage. They were convenient for actors to cross in and out of scenes. It was incredible,” said Ellsworth.

While the actors and the tech crew both worked hard to fill their roles and create this production, the director, Van Doornewaard, did his part to bring the play to life with his vision for the production. 

“I just trust the students. I’m an actor first,” Van Doornewaard said. “I’m an actor before a director, so I really understand the process that it takes to learn something and make something good, so I try to trust my actors, and I would make sure to just help them where they needed help and just allow them to do their own work.”

Van Doornewaard goes on to explain how the group of actors influenced his directing. 

“Van Doornewaard said, “They were honestly a really great group. I think it’s Steven Spielberg that has a quote. It’s, ‘The secret to directing is having amazing actors work with you.’ Having the amazing group of people that I had work with me definitely made it look like that my job went a lot better than arguably it did, but I think that them being so easy to work with definitely benefited me in the long run.”