In New York State, schools have been closed for the rest of the academic year. But classes continue, and so does art.
No Exodus, the J-D Drama Show, written and directed by senior Alethea Shirilan-Howlett, has scheduled their virtual performance of the show for June 7th. It will be a multimedia performance, harnessing the talents of the entire J-DHS art community. The show will be linked to a fundraiser (in place of ticket sales). All profits from that fundraiser will go to CNYArts to provide scholarships for children in the area who want to attend art, music, and drama camps.
“Once we decided to go virtual, I knew we had gained an opportunity we could have never had before. A bunch of music and visual art students who weren’t involved in the production before have lent us their skills and their talents to give us this amazing original soundtrack and beautiful artist renderings of the set. We may have lost the opportunity to perform live, but we gained the opportunity to showcase the gifts of so many music and art students,” says Shirilan-Howlett.
“Witnessing the project unfold across Zoom is interesting; we get to really work with the actors in a way that promotes community and collaboration. Seeing everyone mold to the new medium is really exciting – I’m incredibly proud to be involved,” assistant director Robyn Luk comments.
As the cast proceeds with rehearsing, the crew is hard at work behind the scenes. The co-music directors, junior Elena Fitzgerald and sophomore Kira Pawletko, are working on composing an original score for the play that student musicians will rehearse and record. Sophomore Max Oppedisano is remixing the well-known classical music that is integral to the show’s plot. Visual artists are working to replicate the feel of what would be the set of the play by completing illustrations of important props and set pieces.
“It’s always amazing to see art bring lots of different people together to create something beautiful, and I’m so excited that the play is finding a way to make that happen despite all that is going on in the world,” says junior Emily Ninestein, who is a vocalist in the production. “It’s going to be an awesome show with lots of talented and wonderful people involved!”
“This is an entirely student-run production,” Shirilan-Howlett says. “Kids love art. Kids need it in their lives. We hope that through this fundraiser, we’ll be able to provide more kids with the opportunity to discover art.”
The show will be live-streamed on Sunday, June 7th at 7:00 P.M. You can get to know the cast and crew on the No Exodus Instagram (@noexodusplay) and the No Exodus Facebook (@noexodus).