Spring Musical Sheds Light on Longing Versus Acceptance


Woodside High School Drama Boosters

A photo from last year’s spring musical production at Woodside.

Zahra Roberts, Staff Writer

Woodside students and staff in the drama department plan to add a creative twist to the annual spring musical while working around the pandemic’s difficulties.

This year’s spring musical will be slightly different from last year’s due to working around the pandemic, introducing new creativity levels, and working hard for a presentable final product. To enjoy this year’s musical while staying safe, the show will be presented virtually, preferably through Zoom. Because the pandemic has affected life so drastically, the spring musical will focus on the theme of longing versus acceptance, challenging the idea of being open to change and powering through with numbers from Billy Elliot, Les Miserables, and many others.

Roxy Reid, a Woodside senior, explains that she’s excited about the music because there’s a lot of time and effort being put in regardless of the obstacles. Even though there’s a time crunch, working with busy students’ schedules, and being creative with the pandemic’s current circumstances, preparation for the musical is going smoothly. Many students from previous years are performing, which provides structure to the new ideas being brought to the light.

“It’s good for the department to know what previous actors are capable of along with their strengths,” Reid said. “Many new people have signed up for the musical, which will help the department analyze and use those new talents to form a creative dynamic of both new and old people to make the musical come together.”

Flexibility allows the talents to rehearse on campus, but the show will not be in person. 

“There’s a lot of preparation that goes into the musical such as rehearsal which will be done hybrid, some at school, and the other half on Zoom,” Reid said. “Every detail is being taken into deep consideration, and that’s substantial because it’ll be done virtually this year which is making certain aspects tense.”

Reid gave an insight on what numbers to expect along with what makes a strong show.

“So far, there are going to be a variety of short broadway numbers instead of just one big musical,” Reid said. “Some of the numbers that will be in the show span from Big River, Spamalot, to Addams Family for this year. I feel that everything is shaped around each actor’s specific talents and creating a show that caters to each actor’s skills, bringing them all together as a whole.

Barry Woodruff Woodside’s director of theatre arts sheds light on the overall theme for the show. 

“The first act is all about longing, separation, and often feeling isolated,” Woodruff said. “The second act focuses on being a part of a family, no one is alone, and friendship. They are two very different acts, but both intel looking forward to the light.”

Things aren’t going to be the same as opening nights from previous years, but there’s still much to look forward to. 

“Usually, we get a nice crowd almost filling the place on opening night, but that’s going to be different this time around,” Woodruff said. “We’re not charging at all because everybody’s had to go through a lot of hard stuff. I’m just really pumped and anxious. I want the people to see that we’re blessed to be able to have a school with so much talent!”

Mason Hughes, a Woodside senior, elaborated on what’s in store for this year’s show. He felt at ease with the hybrid rehearsals, which help the preparation process flow better on behalf of the actors.

“For the most part, the plan is for the actors to record our voices in the studio and record behind a green screen because that’s the best way to bring it to life while keeping everyone safe at the same time,” Hughes said. “Since things are a bit different, the best way to go about it is to stay positive, be patient, and give it our all. Besides conflicting schedules, this musical is going to run very smoothly for the most part.”

While Hughes enjoys his contributions to the production, he appreciates how everyone’s contributions can create something unique.

“I have a solo, a duet, and a few ensembles, but I’m no more important than any other cast member,” Hughes said. “The show’s quality depends on what the whole cast can do, not just my part or someone who has the most songs. My impact contributes to the team of actors, and teamwork is what makes a good show.”

Even though the talents and staff have a few challenges ahead, working together and keeping a positive attitude will help them power through.

“Having fun and being able to provide a memorable experience for everyone is what makes the show, and that’s all that matters,” Hughes said.