As some of you may know, the SMUS Middle School has recently put on a production of “The Wizard of Oz” I’m sure some of you are already thinking, “Oh, its probably just a little play put on in the school gym with cute little costumes..”. Well, you are wrong. We preformed at the McPherson Theatre, had over 200 cast members, 50+ backstage crew members, 30 set painters (including me), 15 foot high sets, amazing costumes, Fog Machines, A full on orchestra, and much more. This production was put on bye the same director as the Gypsy Baron, the opera I did last year.
I was cast as a Munchkin and a Poppy. I know these weren’t very big roles but they both serve a very important part in the play. The Munchkins are the first glimpse of Oz, and the Poppies were a major delay in Dorothy’s hunt for Emerald City. There were a lot of munchkins (about 60), and some of them were too tall to be on their knees (Dorothy was quite short…) the “too tall” kids were put in the houses that were 6 feet in the air, we popped our heads out and surprised everyone!
What I enjoyed the most, was probably that suspense when I was lying down on the bridge the “too tall” munchkins were during the Munchkin scene, trying as hard as I possibly could to not show any of myself while hiding behind the houses, waiting for the queue to pop my head out and smile the biggest, cheesiest smile ever. I love being on stage, and being able to be myself, through a different character. What I love about acting is that you aren’t judged about who you are, because you aren’t your real self.
What I didn’t enjoy during the production is really difficult to choose, because the whole thing was so much fun! But if i had to choose, it would be the endless repeats of the scenes I was in. It may have been two scenes, but I can recite those two scenes from memory now!
I loved this production. I became friends with people I may never have ever had a conversation with, and met some amazing people that helped make this production receive raving reviews. I learned how to die gracefully. I learned how to smile a really big smile. I am grateful that I go to a school where things like this isn’t only thought of, they happen and we have our Middle School Broadway show. Mr. Frater, the director had quite the courage, brains, and heart to spend five months preparing us, and teaching us our lines and character traits. Arabella, the choreographer spent hours, and hours choreographing the dance routines (especially for the almost professional grade eight dancers), and teaching them to us. These people are amazing. I know that working with teens and tweens is pretty hard, but they make it seem easy.
I really enjoyed this production and can’t wait for two years! (To see more photos click here)