How We Do It and Why

Romeo & Juliet on the Border is still being edited, with sixty children, their families, and their teachers waiting expectantly for the big release day. As predicted, it will not be ready before winter break. We are making three separate videos, one for each class. It is complicated and multi-layered, with virtual choirs, bits of stage combat and dance, and many dramatic opportunities for our young actors to work with the tools of the trade, including facial expression, focus, movement, gesture, listening, vocal expression, and costumes; all from the complicated location called “home.” 

Juliet loses hope in the living room. The messenger gallops an imaginary horse through the kitchen. And, even at these early stages of editing, the urgency of the cautionary tale is still palpable and, as is always true with this story, still applicable to life today. While we long for the days when we will again share real-time performance experiences, our students are gaining new understanding of how to work with what is possible. Courage and commitment are still required, and these qualities were brought to the camera.

It is deeply touching to see evidence of parents, in making every moment of our on line productions happen. Parents who create backdrops, provide costume assistance, or reserve a quiet space in a busy household. Parents who learn how to frame the picture, who keep the dog and cat and baby in a separate room for a few minutes, who check the complicated schedule and provide encouragement. Parents are attentive stage managers; the unsung heroes who make the show possible. 

Thank you parents, for your generosity of spirit, your time, and your attention to the details that make it possible for us to bring your children into a bit of enchantment, even from afar. But now, it’s time to rest. We’ll take our work back up when we return. We wish all of you a peaceful, hopeful break.

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