Republic’s High School’s Tiger Theatre usually performs its annual musical in the fall, but restrictions caused by the pandemic forced a change in the schedule – one of many changes instituted over the past few months. This year, the department is performing two plays in repertory, alternating nights over a two-weekend period. They’re in the middle of that two-week stretch now, with more performances planned for this weekend.
“We had always planned on doing shows in repertory – a theatrical term for show ‘A’ on one night and show ‘B’ on the next – this season. Now that we have two theatre faculty members, it increases opportunities for our students,” said Director David Krudwig. “It exposes our students to another type of performance theatre as well as increases the number of students who can participate.”
The two shows this season are “See How They Run” and “Blithe Spirit,” both comedies.
“We are excited to bring them to you now, as we all can use a little comedy in all of our lives,” Krudwig said. “We picked these two plays since they can be performed with the same scenic design and construct, thus streamlining the production process.”
Preparation for the performances has been a challenge because of the many health adjustments required for teachers and students.
“We have to manage expectations. This has been the most difficult part, keeping and managing our expectations,” said Krudwig. “The other half of the stress is getting students to meet those moving expectations as they change. It is like hitting a moving target while running on a treadmill, and the treadmill is also moving.
“Then we have added responsibilities to mitigate the pandemic, face shield rehearsals, masking backstage, 6 feet distance, and extra cleaning, to name a few. It has been a labor, but a labor of love to be able to provide our students this much-needed outlet.”
The performances themselves are being conducted with an eye to Health Department restrictions. Audiences are being held to 50% of the auditorium’s capacity, and attendees are being spaced apart. Because the department is performing eight times over two weekends, there are also more opportunities for audience members to watch safely.
“The kids are the best part of the whole situation. We have missed them and working on a common goal,” Krudwig said. “To give them an outlet to be creative in this time has been a blessing. We hope to be able to produce the big ‘fall’ musical in April.”
There’s still time to get tickets for this weekend’s showings of Blithe Spirit and See How They Run. You can order at TigerTheatre.org.