Godspell Overcomes Cancellations, Lockdowns, Delays
Grit. Tenacity. Innovation.
That is what it has taken to bring the high school performing arts rendition of “Godspell, Jr.,” to the stage, even a virtual one.
Like every aspect of life, COVID has impacted performing arts, all the way from shutting down Broadway in New York City, to eliminating K-12 school productions nationwide. But, the show must go on, and OCS performing arts was determined that it would despite several close-call cancellations, lockdowns and delayed production schedules.
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“We searched for a way to produce a show innovatively in the midst of all the critical COVID safety protocols. Our hearts wanted to give this experience to our students who are so hungry to connect on campus and connect with the performing arts,” said OCS Theatre Director Ros Allen-Enciso.
Some of the adaptations included moving rehearsals outdoor on the quad, pre-recording student voices for all the music, and of course, wearing masks and social distancing. The tech staff will be setting up a film set on the quad and constructing lighting towers and utilizing camera operators and sound engineers for a four-camera film shoot. The show will be shot completely outdoors with no live audience and then streamed for viewers on May 14-16 and 21 and 22.
- Friday, May 14, at 7:00pm
- Saturday, May 15 at 7:00pm
- Sunday, May 16 at 7:00pm
- Friday, May 21 at 7:00pm
- Saturday, May 22 at 7:00pm
Students have demonstrated tremendous resilience and optimism, and incredible joy for this opportunity throughout the whole process.
Sophomore Caleb Polaha plays Jesus as the lead and he feels the novelty of the situation.
“Coming off a year where we have all been in our houses and quarantined and then we just jump right into this kind of show has been pretty wild. We haven’t seen some of our friend for a while, and now we are just getting used to being back (on campus) and also into rehearsals. This has been an extremely unique and rare experience,” he said.
Despite any challenges though, and even because of them, he believes the cast has drawn close and pulled together for what he feels “will be a really great show.”
Building community in the cast and also for the audience is exactly what Allen-Enciso hopes will result from all the hard work and effort of this production.
“Godspell, at its core, is an uplifting story centered on building a community built on Christ’s teachings about love. It is a refreshing story to enjoy and to be reminded of the importance of our community, of hope and of love - especially now when we all have collectively gone through such challenging times,” she shared.
The production team is led by Allen-Enciso and co-director Bradley Gosnell, Class of 2010, and also includes sound engineer Ben Adams, Class of 2003, who was the very first OCS alum to cross the graduation stage. Joining them are musical director Edward Rouse and technical director David Alexander.