Senior drama students prepare for show

By Leah Kuntz, Feature Editor — Under the direction of drama teacher Brittany Eckstrom, the senior drama class will be performing verbatim theater works on Dec. 15, at 7 p.m. in the Black Box.

“It allows you to create something original in a new way,” Eckstrom said.

Verbatim theater is an uncommonly known style of performance that consists of a script made from interviews about a certain topic that actors and or directors gather. A debated or controversial topic is usually used as the basis for verbatim. When performing, the actors try to reenact the interview responses onstage.

The seniors divided into four groups and then picked a topic. The four final subjects that were chosen are beauty standards, divorce, fear and bullying. Each group will try make a point about the said subject they chose.

“I just researched new modern theatre styles because I wanted them to do something they’d never done before,” Eckstrom said.

After setting groups and topics, the seniors went around the school and conducted interviews with other students, teachers and staff. The interviews provide the bulk of their scripts, which can be organized and reorganized to fit the point or purpose of each groups’ production.

“The script was a really long, drawn-out process and there were a lot of steps involved, like actually recording interviews to picking out which parts we wanted to use. But once the everything was in in front of us, the script fell into place pretty easily,” senior Erin Allison said.

Each group’s performance will be about five to 10 minutes long, though in real verbatim productions, shows are full length or hours long. While professional verbatim theater can take months to put together, the seniors’ has only taken four weeks.

“I think we’ve all been working very hard and we’ve been able to get a lot accomplished,” Allison said.

[Updated Aug. 8, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]