Sixth, seventh, and eighth graders at the Riverside School in Lyndonville are engrossed in their annual Play Week to bring together all the elements of their spring production, "Singin' in the Rain."
Performances of their play will be Friday and Saturday, March 24th and 25th at 7:00 p.m. in the Barn at Riverside. Admission to this lovely performance is by donation.
Each student has an acting role or position on the tech crew in the play, but they have also spent two class periods over each of the last 8 weeks collaborating on the production elements of sets, props, costumes, or publicity.
In the sets elective students collaborate to design creative backgrounds that make the acting more believable for the audience. In Props the students come up with interesting objects for characters to use during the play. Publicity is also an elective choice, in this elective they make eye-catching posters, format the program, and schedule different ways to promote the play. In costumes the students sew, craft, or borrow every single costume there is in the play themselves.
There are no academic classes during this week, and the classrooms get turned into meeting places for the various groups of students who need to meet different goals by working together. Play Week at Riverside is a chance for the middle school to put the finishing touches on their play while learning collaboration skills that they will use for the rest of their lives. It may sound easy to have no math, English, or science for a week, but students comment that often it is more stressful, especially for the lead roles who might not have their lines memorized yet. The students’ hard work during the week shows with two amazing performances on Friday and Saturday nights.
7th grader Angela Steele says, “Play week is a time where Riversiders can express their creative abilities.”
Singin’ in the Rain had to go through a tough election process - among other popular musicals - by the students to become their chosen focus this winter. There are three rounds of voting, with time for students to argue and debate the merits of each option. with time for students to argue and debate the merits of each option. At first, "Aladdin" had received the most votes, but then it was noted that this show has only one lead female part. Since there are more females than males that wanted parts, selection had to be redone, and "Singin’ in the Rain" became the collective choice.