‘Curtains up’: Spring high school productions return a year after pandemic

Published: Apr. 10, 2021 at 12:27 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - It is time for curtains to go up as theaters across the Capital City are reopened after being closed for a year due to the pandemic. Local schools are putting on their spring performances before a live audience once again.

Friday night was opening night for Lincoln High School’s “The Wind in the Willows.”

The premiere happened a year later than expected after director Mark Marple announced that 2020′s performance was canceled last year.

“I had a lot of them just really just break down over it. I mean, they just put so much time and effort into the show,” Lincoln High School Theatre Director, Mark. A. Marple said.

But now, this Spring, the curtain is drawing back, and Marple’s students are once again taking center stage. They even have specially-designed masks to aid the performers.

“These really came in handy because you can hear better, you can sing better, and you’re actually able to see the actor’s faces,” stage manager for the “The Wind in the Willows,” Maggie Zheng, explained.

Students are thankful for the opportunity to entertain Tallahassee.

“We are still able to do performances like this. We’re still able to bring joy to people who enjoy this kind of production, and that’s really been kind of the light at the end of the tunnel, for me as well,” a Lincoln student who is playing Mr. Toad in “The Wind in the Willows,” said.

Community Christian School: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe
Community Christian School: The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe(Hannah Messier)

One year ago, across the city, Community Christian School students said the pandemic halted their spring production of “The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe.”

“Everything which we knew was suddenly gone. My theatre is more than just an extracurricular activity. It’s like your family,” a student playing the dwarf in the play, Karis Cliburn, said.

But this year, their director gladly gave them a second chance.

“It was so good. They were so excited, but I did have a couple of them say, can I still have the role I had last time? I said, so long as you haven’t grown any and they didn’t, so it all worked out.”

Students are now stepping back into the spotlight and the community into a bit of normalcy.

Lincoln High School’s performance of “The Wind in the Willows” was Friday and will run again at 7:30 p.m. Saturday.

Community Christian School’s “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe” opens April 21 at 7 p.m.

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