Gifts from a Zoomusical Production
As we approach the holidays I try to remember the moments in the year for which I can be grateful. And the times which emphatically stand out are the moments I had working on our Zoom musical productions; one in July and the other September through November. I would not have believed that such amazing, creative work could happen from a dozen little video boxes across the city and spanning the country.
I had so many wonderful surprises from the work the cast of 11-14 year olds did. In the scenes, the young actors would look up, down, diagonally or across at one another and even though they were speaking to the wall in their room, you could swear that they were in the same space as one another. So focused was their attention to their partner and commitment to their emotions that it was pure magic. I’d forget that they never worked with one another in real life.
My creative collaborator and real-life partner Emmanuelle, choreographed fabulous dance numbers. It was so much fun to watch the performers dancing together. They learned that expressing an attitude while dancing can tie a piece together. Together, we also learned movement toward and away from the camera worked really well on Zoom. It brought depth and life to the dances.
We also found many ways to work with the Zoom medium. Actors seemingly passed props to one another, we found ways to join hands, an actor could push at the edge of their screen and the actor next to them would fall. We found ways of moving the boxes around, theatrical blocking in the digital world.
Most of all, the actors who never met in real life, became friends - became an acting company. They gave me the gift of hope; that even though we are quarantined in our separate spaces, we can still create and connect. I’m looking forward to the new year when more wonderful memories can be made.