2020 has left theatres in a mess. When the WHO declared a pandemic, audiences quickly headed for the exit doors, and restrictions have kept the curtains closed on the industry.

Additionally, all schools we know of have either cancelled their 2020 productions or cryogenically frozen them, to be thawed at a suitable time next year.

Not here. Woodleigh has always been different.

Our production process amidst the COVID-19 crisis has exemplified this.

We announced our staging of Arthur Miller’s classic play The Crucible towards the end of 2019. The students who auditioned envisioned themselves in costume come August, performing on-set to a live audience keen to applaud them.

Cue lockdown.

What to do? Cancel? Record? Delay? Or…

 A radio-play? Lock it in.

We took on a complete revision – in the real sense of the word, an altogether new vision – ironically, one without a visual stage. As a result, cast, crew, and staff have spent the past months wrapping our heads and hearts around this new format. We have rescheduled rehearsals, renegotiated the rights, and retrenched our physical focus for vocal training and script work. We also engaged LSS Productions to professionally produce the audio, complete with music, diegetic sound, and effects.

The most recent stage 4 lockdown, brought our final recording process forward by two weeks. Still, it is in the can, and what we have produced, against so many odds, is an inspiring piece of polished aural theatre that has taught us many invaluable lessons in perseverance, resilience, and creativity.

Here are three things to get excited about:

  1. A contemporary dance performance choreographed by Year 12 student Jussy Poyser, and filmed/produced by our VCE Media class;
  2. Music arranged by Year 12 student Rosh O’Connell, with performances by Jazzy Evenden, Y12 on harp and Tayla Basso, Y10 on cello;
  3. 50% of ticket sales will be donated to our local Willum Warrain Aboriginal Association, to help them continue to fight two villains that appear in the play: prejudice and injustice.

Please note – only one ticket is required per household. Tickets can be purchased here.

One ticket gives entry to both Acts I & II on Thursday 20 August and Acts III & IV on Friday 21 August