By Alexandra Margelu, Hannah Jones and Madison Nualart
MAR 15, 2018
March 8, 2018 was Saint Thomas Aquinas High Schools (STA) opening night for this year’s Spring musical, Sister Act. This production was based on the 1990’s movie that was set in a California convent during the 70’s. The play’s director, Mr. Jerry Seeger, told Raider Review that he, “… chose Sister Act,” because he was, “ …trying to find something that would be a lot of fun, that would have more women than men.”
STA’s drama students worked long and hard during the preparations leading up to the big opening night. The actors went through eight weeks of casting and rehearsals. The long process started with the casting of the roles by Mr. Seeger, Mrs. Drozdovitch, Mrs. Virginio and Mr. McCormack. After all the roles were filled, the actors went straight into learning the lyrics and melodies of the songs in Sister Act with the help of Mrs. Drozdovitch and sophomore Isabella Klar. Once the actors grew comfortable with the songs, they went to Ms. Virginio to learn the dance routines. With the songs and dances perfected, they continued to practice and memorize, combining the two difficult tasks into one fantastic performance. The actors spent a majority of the rehearsals cramming lines, eliminating any flaws and perfecting the stage presence.
The regular schedule for practices included staying after school every day for two and a half hours, as well as occasional Saturdays. Then, when the last week before the musical’s opening night came around, “hell week” began. Each day the actors and stage crew rehearsed for seven hours after school. During this time, the Sister Act cast grew closer, becoming a sort of makeshift family. Of the 21 actors in the cast, 12 were freshmen. Mr. Seeger said, “It’s the youngest cast I’ve ever had.” And showing the family spirit, senior Sebastian Zozaya said, “My favorite experience was … getting to see all the talent the young kids have.” With the stress of memorizing lines and routines, within a limited amount of time, they supported each other throughout the process. Senior Peter Pecic described his favorite experience in preparing for Sister Act as, “…. the bonds that I made with all the people in the cast from Sister Act …. because staying after school till 5:30 every day as well as the week of the play staying until 10:30, it really makes you appreciate one another and appreciate the high times and although we have the low times, everything just cancels out to be complete bliss.”
Everyone’s hard work resulted in the show’s 38 songs being performed extraordinarily well. The actors sang beautifully, conveyed amazing emotions throughout the performance and succeeded in drawing laughter from the audience. Parents, friends, teachers and classmates showed their support for the actors by coming to watch the performances. STA freshman and audience member, Tyler Stafford, shared his thoughts with Raider Review stating, “It was a great performance, and I already can’t wait for the next show!” With terrific support from everyone who attended and participated, the performance exceeded all expectations.