Socially-distanced Shakespeare: High School Students To Perform 'Much Ado About Everything'

 

Socially-distanced Shakespeare: High School Students To Perform 'Much Ado About Everything'

With social distancing SOPs safely in place, the arts can flourish once again!

Under the direction of High School (HS) Theater Teacher, Tina Casey, our HS students have been working tirelessly to put on 'Much Ado About Everything' this October 1 and 2.

The play is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's classic, 'Much Ado About Nothing,' which is part of ISKL's Grade 9 English curriculum. Tina, who has adapted the play herself and is the Director, has incorporated both Shakespearean and modern elements into the script.

"'Much Ado About Nothing' is Shakespeare's play about the craziness of people who think they love each other, or who aren't sure what love is about for them - it's all of the mix-up and happenstances that go on in the play," said Tina. "In 'Much Ado About Nothing,' there's a lot on how we treat gender expectations, and on what women are supposed to be like and what men are supposed to be like. 'Much Ado About Everything' is an adaptation of that which includes having a modern cast who are studying Shakespeare's play in school. And as they study it, they realize how much their lives today still mirror those issues and themes that Shakespeare has in the original production."

Lewis M.('23) and Ann G.('21) take the role of the Shakespearean leads, Benedick and Beatrice, who both loved the opportunity to participate in an innovative production.

"I love William Shakespeare, and we learned about Much Ado About Nothing in Grade 9, so when I heard we'd be doing Much Ado About Nothing - or rather, Much Ado About Everything this year, I was excited. I adore the character of Beatrice and the feminist message the play sends," said Ann.

Lewis expressed his hopes for being in the production, "I hope everyone gets to appreciate Shakespeare and understand how impactful it is to the rest of the world, and how each story has changed every other story that's come after."

Katie Milton, Central Administrative Officer at ISKL and producer of the play, discussed the production's beginnings and explained the organized approach to the community's process and collective effort.

"The schedule was set before rehearsals began, so the actors all were aware of the time commitment. Our first rehearsals were Zoom rehearsals, a new one for us, but it was great to have these first connections. Read-throughs and script development for the modern scenes - it all was great fun!

"At every rehearsal, senior student Olivia L.('21) can be seen at Tina Casey's side as the Assistant Director, keeping the script on track as changes are made, and blocking is set. We also have student support as the backstage crew to support the Stage Manager and tech crew," enthused Katie.

'We hear so often that "it takes a village" and "many hands make light work," and this production is no exception! Our theatre team, our maintenance team, and gardeners all work together to bring the theatre to life! " Katie went on to describe how alumni and students are assisting behind the scenes with everything from set, costuming, props to hair, and makeup.

With such restricted and uncertain times behind us, it is a pleasure to benefit from the creativity and celebrations ahead of us; we can't wait to watch it!
Bravo to everyone involved in Much Ado About Everything!