Branham’s faculty and Drama department will present their 11th annual faculty musical, based on the popular Disney movie, High School Musical, on April 13, 14, and 15 in the Performing Arts Center.
The staff participants and seniors Mariah McDonald and Grace Su, who are student directors of the musical, have been prepping since early February. The dates of the showings were originally set for late February, but were pushed back to enable for more rehearsals.
This is the 11th annual Faculty Musical since 2006; skipping only last year. The faculty performed Grease two years ago, Charlie Brown three years ago, and Footloose four years ago.
The staff is enjoying rehearsals and making light of the minor mistakes.
Grace said, “It is fun to see the teachers out of a teaching environment.” Mariah added, “It is a little bit strange at first to be directing the staff members, but it has been a lot of fun to work with all of them.”
As soon as the staff members showed up to rehearsal, they efficiently learned their lines and thoroughly practiced their choreography. Even during some down time between practicing as a whole group, each faculty member practiced on their own. Mr. Ronald Smare, P.E. teacher, ran through some of his lines to make sure it was on time with the dance; Ms. Tobi Schweizer, English teacher, ran through her song lyrics.
Ms. Schweizer said, “I love having the students direct us and I enjoy getting to know the other staff members better.”
In the musical, Troy Bolton, played by Mr. Fitzgerald Vo, a science teacher, and Gabriella Montez, played by Ms. Schweizer, are two completely different teenagers who meet at a New Year’s Eve party while singing karaoke. Shortly after, Troy goes back to his high school, East High, in New Mexico, to find that Gabriella is a new student there. They quickly become close friends and accidentally audition for the school musical.
“We chose High School Musical in part because of how well-known it is,” Mariah said, “but we also did [it] because we thought it would be interesting to put the teachers in the position of high schoolers.”
The faculty musical not only seems to bring the faculty closer to students by performing a well-known musical, but also causes comradery between the faculty members; bonding during the down time. At one point Ms. Joyce Davis, a guidance advisor, and Ms. Kori Reynolds, a science teacher, were seen off to the side exchanging various occurrences in their lives; as well as, poking fun at Mr. Smare together when they jokingly commented that they thought it was him singing when the track was playing.
The drama students have high hopes for this years’ faculty musical. With a sideways glance, Grace joked, “I hope that it does not crash and burn.” April 13-15, in the PAC; save the date!