The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t stopping students at Caledonia Secondary School from showing off their performance talents.
The school’s musical theatre program is showcasing its performance of Disney’s High School Musical online at 7 p.m. on May 15, keeping the 28 year tradition of annual school musicals alive.
A live audience at the R.E.M. Lee Theatre is not possible this year, so the production is moving online instead.
Local videographer Storm Carroll filmed the performance over three nights and combined the best aspects into the final production to be aired May 15 at 7 p.m. as if it was a live show at the theatre.
The performance tells the story of a group of high school students as they deal with the ups and downs of a busy week at school.
“Finding a way for the musical to happen was really important to us,” said Graham Wojdak, Caledonia teacher and director of the show, in a media release.
“Covid means we faced a lot of unique challenges, but we are so glad we undertook the process. It is a quality show, and the students really came together.”
Unlike in previous years, the cast and crew navigated stringent COVID-19 protocols to put the show together. The pit band, directed by Jacquelynne Amendt, had its location adjusted to stay separated from the cast.
Thirty-one students have been rehearsing since December — fewer than normal. To further limit the number of people on-set and to keep the risk of transmitting the virus as low as possible, the cast took it upon themselves to execute most of the work done by support staff as well.
“Being in the musical for three years have been a great experience and this year it not only was a special year but a special group of people,” said grade 12 student Bella Lang in the release.
“We all became quite a family and made great memories even if we had to wear masks.”
People can book a viewing of the musical for $25 per screen, meaning families and COVID bubble groups can watch together, by visiting www.showtix4u.com and searching Caledonia Secondary School.