The play went up last night to a pitifully small audience of about 17 people. It makes me sad to see how little of the community (both school and otherwise) is willing to show up to support our students. Perhaps we’ll have more people there tonight; I certainly hope so.
Despite the small audience the play went far better than I had any reason to expect that it would. It was easily the best run through we have ever done. The kids were so hyped up and excited; it was wonderful to see. It made me feel that, even though we weren’t able to put up as professional of a production as I would have liked, this experience has been a worthwhile one for the students. The set looks great (thanks to our construction tech teacher and last week’s fun set painting party). I have been to WalMart every. single. day. this week looking for various things for the play. On Thursday night I wandered aimlessly in the hardware section looking for something that could simulate an intercom speaker, so that the Principal’s (recorded) voice didn’t appear to be floating out of the open doorway. I’m going to take some pictures tonight and I’ll post some tomorrow. God willing.
Things that (almost) went wrong last night:
1) One of our cast members didn’t show up. Didn’t. Show. Up. She plays the dual role of office assistant/ school secretary and she has been flaky all week (she’s one of the girls who was “in a fight” after some big post-Prom drama). She was at rehearsal yesterday but she simply didn’t come to school or to the play last night. Crisis! Luckily, my fellow 05 CM (who had agreed to play the bit part of a student dropout) was willing to take on the school secretary part of the role, while one of our stellar cast members bravely took on the student assistant lines in addition to her own.
2) I forgot my lines! A few days ago I took the additional part of the school librarian, and there is a brief part at the beginning of the second act where I need to be out on the front of the stage. I was backstage, with my shoes off, coaching kids on their next entrance when I realized I had to be onstage in three lines! Once I got out there I was so flustered that I flubbed my lines. The kids covered for me admirably!
3) In one of the last scenes where the kids take the stage as a class, the door was accidentally left open. This is bad because it cuts off people who are backstage from walking to the other side of the set. My co-director and I could see one of our student actors through the open door and began frantically pantomiming and mouthing for her to “Close the door! Close. The. DOOR.” The poor girl was so confused. She stared at us blankly for a few minutes, before confusedly getting up and changing desks. “No! No! The door! The DOOR!” She wandered around the classroom a bit, hopelessly confused as the scene went on around her. By this point I was collapsed on a chair laughing desperately (and silently), so I’m not sure if something finally got through to her, or if my co-director just gave up and closed the door from backstage.
4) As the lights go out at the end of the play, the Teacher is supposed to be reading roll. She calls out names as the stage dims and voices answer. Here is the last thing our audience heard last night:
“um… Chris Brown?”
The whole cast was laughing as we took our curtain call.
Tonight is it. The last performance and then I can go back to worrying about my EOC class and my Senior Advisory responsibilities. Yikes.