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CB Theatre’s Virtual Performance

Even with the restrictions of COVID and not being able to use the George Cunningham ’40 Performing Arts Center for the spring play, the show must go on. The CB theatre department has accomplished a difficult task and has been given the go ahead to do an online rendition of the play Twentieth Century, a […]

Even with the restrictions of COVID and not being able to use the George Cunningham ’40 Performing Arts Center for the spring play, the show must go on. The CB theatre department has accomplished a difficult task and has been given the go ahead to do an online rendition of the play Twentieth Century, a play they were originally scheduled to perform in early 2020. But the restrictions that have been placed on this play and on all of the cast and crew will only help to drive them to put on the performance of their lives and strive for excellence, even if it is on a Zoom call.

Mr. Michael Jackson, the theater director at CB, is striving to bring this engaging and comedic play to life through the medium of a directed Zoom call.

“Showing skill and talent on stage is one thing, but to do it at home with distraction only feet away at all times is a whole different ball game,” he says. The endless distractions and other setbacks for the play to go on and for the actors to show their acting prowess have only made Mr. Jackson more motivated as a director.

“This will probably be one of the harder plays that I’ve done because with no set or people on stage, there will be many kinks in the system that will try and derail this whole thing,” he says. “Only when I’m editing will it look like a full piece, but me and Mrs. [Christianson] are always looking for ways to make the plays special for the audience and the cast and crew.”

Ms. Heather Christianson ‘01, the director of stage lighting and design, will also be co-Director, and will be helping the editing process and making sure that everything goes smoothly as usual. But she knows that not everything will go smoothly, as it is online and not in person, so she will be trying her best to help any way that she can. Whether with green screens or with certain background choices, she will be there to look over the play and make sure that everything looks as expected.

“Of course it sucks that we won’t have the stage this year, but it’ll still look great because we have an awesome cast and a great crew that knows what they’re doing and everyone will be on their A-game.”

Another person who will do everything that they can to make the play as best as they can is Aela Veerkamp (‘21), who will be playing Lily in the show.

“I’m so excited to have such an amazing role. I would have liked to have been on a stage, but what can you do,” the senior says. “Even with the setbacks, I want to be the best actor that I can be, and show how good this show is to the people watching.”

And even with the online and not in person, she will be striving to bring the theater experience and feel into the performance.

And with that, the virtual curtain rises, and the actors take their places. The director waits patiently as the cast puts on the show of their lives. Whether that happens in the end, we’ll see. But it is certain that the cast and crew with try their best to make it so.

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