While the current pandemic has spurred ingenuity across many areas of our campus, Mrs. Amy Crane and the Marquette Theatre Department unearthed a new layer of creativity these past six weeks.
"I'm learning a whole new way to look at a scene and direct. I feel like I'm back to square one," the veteran conductor said.
Marquette's spring musical fell victim to the shutdown. The fall play will have the feel of a bold startup.
For the first time in her 21 years at the helm, Crane will direct a performance sans audience. It doesn't mean no one will be watching.
Leah Lawson, Joey Henrich, Zoe Kolosci, Bob Johnson, and the rest of the cast and crew will present The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon while DMZ Productions and Broadway on Demand are joining forces to deliver it to a screen near you.
Tagged as a comedy, The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon aims to weave numerous fairy tales into one hysterical story. It incorporates many of the characters from our youth - Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood, Hansel and Gretel - with others more opaque.
Knowing full well they would be performing without a crowd, the theatre department took adaptation to another level when Marquette pivoted to virtual learning for two weeks during the climax of preparation.
"The kids were great. There was a learning curve with Zoom and differing internet connections, but we worked through it. Once the creativity got flowing, it got way better. They found things around the house to use as props. At one point, Paolo (Castillo) was wearing a hanger for a crown," Crane said with a chuckle.
The group has overcome the challenges with aplomb. In fact, Crane feels the adversity has only bolstered morale.
"Zoe (Kolosci) remarked last week that this is the best cast she's worked with here. They all have each other's backs. That's all I can ask for as a director," Crane said.
Though most of the onstage leaders are upperclassmen, a handful of new faces have Crane optimistic for this year and beyond.
"We've had three freshmen come on board and they've been awesome. I'm very excited about the future of the theatre department," she observed.
To purchase streaming tickets to The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon, fans will need to create an account at Broadway on Demand. There is no charge to create an account, but cost for the streaming is $15.00 with options to donate additional funds to the program.
Viewing access will begin next Friday morning (Nov. 13) at 12:01 am and end Sunday evening (Nov. 15) at midnight. Fans can watch at any time during the weekend.
The Marquette Theatre Department will also be hosting two additional fundraisers.
Holly's Restaurant in Michigan City is holding a giveback day on Tuesday, Nov. 10th. Show the coupon posted on our Facebook page and the program will receive a portion of the proceeds.
Additionally, the department will conduct a poinsettia sale later in the month. Each plant is $12 each. Money and orders must be received by Monday, November 30th as plants will be available for pickup at school from Thursday, December 10th until Friday, December 11th. Envelopes will be distributed to all performing arts students early next week.