LTC continues with fall production despite COVID-19 setbacks


Makayla Archambeault

Special education teacher Daniel Horst addresses LTC members at a Zoom meeting that was held to answer any questions students might have about the upcoming fall production.

Elizabeth Elliott and Janka Gerber

While on a typical school year, Lafayette Theatre Company (LTC) would be in full swing of its fall production, COVID-19 has forced the club to adapt to new guidelines and find other ways to create a fall production. This year, LTC is producing its first-ever virtual show for the fall production: The Best of Lafayette Theatre

Director Megan Dill said, “With COVID-19 taking over this year, we tried to come up with a way to still let our students create theatre. By producing a virtual show, our students can film themselves at home or in small groups at school, and our editing crew can piece it together to create a finished product. This actually allows many more students to be involved than are typically cast in a fall play production.”

The show will be compiled of scenes from productions Lafayette has done in the past 10 years and will be a variety of both plays and musicals. There are 19 scenes total in the production with 10 in act one and nine in act two.

Featured scenes include Noises Off, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Peter and the StarCatcher, Footloose, Out of the Frying Pan, The Little Mermaid, Romeo and Juliet, Shrek: the Musical, Almost, Maine, Little Shop of Horrors, Leading Ladies, Sister Act, Falling, The Addams Family, Fame, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Hairspray

“I think there was some uncertainty and disappointment that we could not produce a play on stage in the theatre as normal, but now that we are deeper in the process, I think students are really enjoying it. Our cast is larger and our crew is getting to challenge themselves and grow skills that we would not have used otherwise. Everyone seems to really be having a good time with it,” Dill said.

The wide variety of scenes that LTC is producing through the show allowed for some actors to be cast in multiple roles that take place in different scenes.

Freshman Benjamin Dimmic said, “I’m really excited about my casting. I wasn’t expecting to get three roles, and even though I haven’t seen the shows, I’m just excited to have gotten cast.”

The show will also include skits written by students introducing each scene as well as two parody songs being Omigod You Guys from Legally Blonde and My Favorite Things from The Sound of Music.

Actors are asked to film their musical number scenes at home in full costume which will be either provided or within guidelines set by the costume crew, but some scenes will be filmed in the theatre with a digital backdrop. 

Junior Davis Dunn, who is a member of the costume crew, said, “Working with costumes completely digitally will be a whole new challenge especially not interacting with the cast, but I’m excited to be working on the show even though I can’t be there in person.”

The scenes that will be performed on stage will be recorded and then edited together to create the final production in a digital format. The production will be filmed and edited by sophomore Micah Bounds. 

“The biggest challenge is going to be figuring out how to translate the theatre narrative to a digital form in a way that’s not distracting to the audience,” Bounds said.

Despite the challenges facing the cast, crew and directors, LTC has expressed enthusiasm towards what the results will be of their hard work.

“I think it will end up being a very cool and unique finished product that the students can keep forever. That’s not something they’ve ever been allowed to do, since we cannot film our regular plays and musicals. We will also have a larger audience, because the link can be shared and watched online, instead of audience members having to come to the theatre. Many of the other teachers and parents that I’ve spoken to are very excited to watch it,” Dill said.

The show is set to premiere on Oct. 15 and 16 and will be released in acts. Act 1 will be released on Oct. 15, Act 2 will follow on Oct. 16, with an encore showing of both acts being released on Oct. 17.