From Stage to Screen: Seattle Academy’s 8th Grade Show Presented on Zoom
This fall, Seattle Academy 8th graders collaborated remotely to produce Help Desk: A-Stay-At-Home Play, by Don Zolidis. Presented on November 12, this was the first 8th grade show rehearsed and performed entirely on Zoom – quite a different venue from our Black Box Theatre on the SAAS campus.
Twenty student actors prepared ten scenes from this new comedy written specifically for remote production. Directed by Michael Cruz (Performing Arts Chair) and coached by new faculty member Ty Greenwood (Rhetoric), students worked together online in break-out rooms to learn and perform two and three-person scenes depicting funny and even absurd Help Desk calls.
Help Desk: A-Stay-At-Home Play depicts the challenges in seeking solutions for technological troubles. Our young actors found their comedic timing together in scenes about struggles to log-in, tangling with a credit card scammer, attempting serious conversation with a clown, and more. Their performances were wonderfully unique and varied. Kudos and appreciation also go to Amos Miller’s students in 8th grade Music. The show featured original music they composed for the opening and closing and for nine scene transitions.
Following the performance, Michael shared this about working with the cast: "It was so nice to work on a comedy with this great group. It was remarkable to see the students working to overcome technical difficulties and discovering how to listen and react to each other on Zoom. These young actors made me laugh every day and found so many ways to make these scenes their own."
This year’s 8th graders rose to new and different challenges creating this virtual show. Their creativity, cooperation, and talents deserve another round of applause!