Below are some photos from my high school’s fall play, Loves Labours Found: Don’t Trust the Boyz, a contemporary sequel to Shakespeare’s Loves Labours Lost. This sequel was created, written, re-written, cast, staged (in the round I should add), produced, costumed, and finally put on for the first time anywhere at the Bergen County Academies high school in Hackensack, New Jersey.
It took two months for the play to be fully realized, first in a project-based class that lasted two hours on Wednesday during trimester three, and finally during the first trimester of this year, leading up to the show’s performance Friday, November 16th at 7pm, and Saturday, November 17th at 2pm and 7pm.
During the project class last year, which I was involved in, we spent most of the time reading and analyzing Shakespeare’s original play, coming up with the basic concept, and starting to assign roles for the characters within the concept. At my school, we hold auditions for the fall play the year before, and because it is a huge ensemble piece, everyone who auditioned was automatically in the show. During the rehearsal process leading up to the show, the entire cast and most of the crew was involved with actually writing the play and finalizing all plot and character details. We also held another round of auditions for specific roles, and the entire cast and crew ended up casting the show itself! I ended up playing Boyet, who in our version, is the intern at the recording studio that the Princess runs with the help of her three ladies, Maria, Katherine, and Rosaline.
The play, I must say, turned out really well! It went through multiple re-writes because of all of the wonderful ideas that the cast brought to the table. The play would never have been as amazing as it was without everyone’s involvement, especially considering the huge amount of musical talent within the cast which was very much essential considering how our show has original raps, songs, and choreography. We even had to write and do re-writes as we staged the show to the point where we didn’t finish the script until two weeks before opening night! While none of the nights were technically flawless, and while there were multiple times I messed or didn’t think that I had enough energy, (and I know a few other actors felt the same) the audience loved it! It brought me so much joy to hear them laughing (and sometimes even to things that my character said!).
The final thing I would like to say is what a great experience this was! Not only did I get closer to the people in my class, but I also got closer to cast and crew members in this production who aren’t in Theater, as well as to the upperclassman both inside and outside of Theater. This was also my first BCA speaking role, so I felt like I could really show off what I could bring to BCA productions. I was not a huge role, but I still had so much fun acting alongside everyone and bringing what I could to the crazy world we created! I learned so much from this experience not just about writing, but about teamwork, acting, diction and volume (since we worked in the round), and about what I could bring to a production. Overall, this was an amazing experience and I can’t for the next show I am involved in!