Whether performing for an audience of students or an audience of judges, Thespians know putting on a show takes practice. Junior and Senior Thespians began working individually to prepare for their district events in December. The members took part in 12 categories including: group musical, duet musical, solo musical, monologue, duet acting group acting, pantomime, set design, costumes, lighting, student directed scene, playwriting and the one act play. District individual events took place Dec. 7. However, the junior high one act festival took place Dec. 6, and the high school one-act festival took place Dec. 12-13.
While districts may seem like a stressful event for some, Mr. Johnpaul Moccia, Thespians sponsor, has a different point of view. “It is not supposed to be a competition. It is a festival. It is to allow students to perform and receive feedback from judges in their field. However, because they give rankings, it too often becomes a competition,” Mr. Moccia said.
Leading up to districts, Thespians created their own rehearsal schedules to work around their other theater commitments. “We sometimes get to rehearse for two to three hours, but many times we just have to fit in time to practice in the fifteen minutes before our other rehearsals,” junior Ella Noriega said.
Noriega performed in two individual events: a solo piece from the musical “A Tale of Two Cities” and a duet musical piece with fellow junior Irene Newman. As part of a larger group, they performed a forty-minute show called “Edges,” a story told through a selection of songs all revolving around the theme of the emotional brink of relationships. Senior Jonah Warhaft performed “If I Didn’t Believe in You” from the musical “The Last Five Years.”
Overall, the team finished with 45 Superior rankings and 13 Excellent rankings. Thespians are judged based on poor, fair, good, excellent or superior rankings. For a student to receive a superior, two out of the three judges must grant it to the student. This makes it the highest award a Thespian can achieve.
As districts close, the Thespians look ahead to their upcoming performances. “After districts we breathe a little and then prepare for anyone who will be attending states and for our two Spring shows,” Mr. Moccia said.
District Thespians One Acts:
One Act Play, “Edges”, a musical: Superior
Technical Achievement: Superior
Maggie Weidner: All Star cast
District Thespians Individual Events:
Julietta Peiretti: Critic’s Choice for monologue
Zahra Willis Cox and Kevaughn Reid: Critic’s Choice for duet musical
Kelly Taylor: Critic’s Choice for playwriting
Irene Newman and Ella Noriega: Honorable Mention for duet musical
Nikolas Serrano: Honorable Mention for publicity design
Jacqueline Schneker: Honorable Mention for costume construction