WA Theater Adapts to COVID-19

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Quenton Xiao

With the year completely derailed by the pandemic, among other events, one might be looking for a way to get their year back on track, as well as for a source of entertainment. As it happens, a perfect fit for both purposes is WA Theater. But has theater itself been derailed by this rollercoaster of a year? How has it changed? What’s old? What’s new? 

Changes

In accordance with safety precautions, and in consideration of the stress and other effects caused by the pandemic this year, WA Theater has made several changes to how it operates, at least for the time being.

“With the current situation…we on the Theater team here at Worcester Academy are aiming to keep theater activities simple, flexible, and fun…without the driving pressure for ‘performance’ or ‘perfection’”, states the WA Theater 2020-2021 mission statement. It continues; “We are also focusing on offering multiple opportunities with a range of…flexibility…minimizing pressure [and] time constraints.”

This year’s theater activities, including upcoming shows, will emphasize allowing “the experience of theater, connection, and personal growth to be the compelling, connecting factors that bring us together.” This year, the WA theater department has chosen to emphasize community and process over the end product, lightening the overall workload to do so.

Upcoming Shows

This year’s fall and winter shows will be presented over Zoom.  The fall show, directed by Ms. Taradash and Ms. Hale, consists of a series of short comedic skits, such as The Ballad of Peach Pit the Dancing Peach by G. A. Laskey and The Man in the Bowler Hat by A. A. Milne, running on Friday, November 13, at 7 PM EST.

Additionally, plays such as The League of Semi-Super Heroes by Michael Dixon and Valerie Smith, DMV Tyrant by Christopher Durang, and In the Wake of The Bounty by William Lament will be presented, running on Saturday, November 14, at 7 PM EST.

A Festival Recap will be held on Monday, November 15 at 3 PM EST, during which all five shows will be presented. There will be no charge for tickets, and viewers will register through a link.

The 2020-2021 theater winter show, presented by Mr. Plante, will feature an interactive, student-created murder mystery, to be released in early 2021. Watch out for more updates!

Other Theater Activities

Another activity in progress run by the WA theater department this year is Theater Troupe, directed by Ms. Krantz, Mr. Plante, Ms. Taradash, Ms. Hale, Mr. Field, and other members of the VPA department. Theater troupe offers a way to meet new people, learn new things about theater, work on various skills, and relax. Activities in theater troupe include drama activities and games, watching and reading professional play productions, and social time. The program will be active for the entire 2020-2021 school year and is hosted primarily over Zoom, meeting weekly on Tuesdays from 4:30 to 6 PM EST.