Romeo + Juliet

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The RMHS theatre program virtually premiered Romeo & Juliet (a comedy) Saturday, Oct. 17. When choosing a play, the program had to take into account the money aspect because rights for a play performance can be costly. Romeo & Juliet was a free piece and one that many people are familiar with. And who hasn’t heard of the preposterous love story? With it being a virtual performance, they decided it would be best to perform an adaptation of Romeo & Juliet because—let’s be honest—three hours on Zoom is a little too much. The actors helped develop modern humor to transform the play into a comedy.

Coordinating an entirely virtual production was certainly challenging, but it was nothing they couldn’t handle. All rehearsals were held over Zoom and all of the costumes and props were from the actors’ own homes. The tech crew was especially creative when it came to selecting backgrounds for each scene on Zoom. The cast practiced nearly every day after school for two months to perfect the performance. 

“I do think that the success of this production truly demonstrates the talent and commitment of our students,” said theatre program director Stephanie Svarz. The group learned new ways to make productions engaging and, for some, let go of nerves that usually come with being on stage. 

          “I felt a lot less nervous than I would if I were on stage,” senior Mary Anne Wlodyga said. “It was really great to experience this new form of theater; although I definitely miss the thrill that being on stage brings.” 

         Many of the actors would much rather have performed in person, but putting on a virtual show was definitely an experience they will never forget. It challenged them to think outside the box and get creative in terms of production. 

          “It certainly gave us all experience and skills that we would have never been able to acquire otherwise,” senior Emma Wozniak, who took on the role of Juliet, said. 

          She is still holding out hope that they can put at least one production on in person this year, but for now, the online show was a unique experience she loved undertaking. As a senior, things have been difficult, but having such close connections to everyone in the program, including Ms. Svarz, allowed for this year to still have its positives according to Wozniak. 

         “Staying busy in the theater programs has kept me happy and sane these past few months,” Wozniak said. 

          After the enticing result of Romeo & Juliet (a comedy), everyone in the program has gained enthusiasm for the rest of the year because of the wave of opportunities to create truly one-of-a-kind performances. Their next performance will be a drive-in Radio experience on Nov. 1 at 7 p.m. which will be an awesome way for people to ‘see’ a performance safely. Because of the immense amount of creativity, the students in the program have, the rest of the year will undoubtedly be a success!