By Annabelle Caraway
Experiencing a live production is an extraordinary feeling that can leave you feeling solemn, energized or even confused. The magic of the theater isn’t brought together easily though, especially in high school. Often high school theater programs are heavily underfunded, and creativity has to be employed to put on a production. For Riverview High School’s theater program, this was the case for their production of Rent last year, that was performed outside due to the pandemic. However, Music Theatre International has recognized the hardships that local, specifically high school, programs are facing.
“A lot of us couldn’t sell to capacity last year or didn’t have the opportunity to bring in audiences, we had to do livestreaming, so a lot of people spend money on rights and then didn’t get a lot of ticket sales in. It was a free event for amateur groups to present, but still getting to present the musical numbers of the quality that would be owned by the largest publishing house in the world. They basically just said, ‘Here you go, have a freebie.’ Everybody’s doing it during November 12 to November 15, all across the entire world,” Casey Vaughan, Riverview’s musical theater teacher, said.
Over the course of three days, Riverview presented a musical showcase with 15 numbers from various musicals, including Newsies and Beauty and the Beast, to name a few.
“We can keep on getting more butts in seats and keep on raising awareness and money and let people know about all the awesome talent we have here; get the kids to put on more performances,” Vaughan said.
Just purchasing a $5 ticket to experience the incredible potential of these students is helping fund future projects and keeping the arts alive. Stay on the lookout for Riverview High School’s spring musical. For more information, visit www.riverviewhstheatre.com or find the group on Instagram @rvhs_theatre.