District to separate musicals next year, necessity for auditorium at North increases


When the former district musical becomes North’s fall musical next year, the theatre department will face many challenges. While it is true that students will have more opportunities because there will be less competition, putting on a full musical in the Black Box theatre could be a hurdle.

In years past, both schools in the district have collaborated to put on a musical in March. Students from North were bussed to Central and both companies worked together in Central’s auditorium, which is complete with a fly rail, a large stage and can hold up to 500 audience members. Now, ten years later, with a change in the near future, the necessity for a full auditorium at North is greater than ever.

While the Black Box provides for a more intimate atmosphere between audience members and actors, the thought of performing a musical including a large company, a pit band and a sufficient stage seems excessively difficult. Even though technical director Teslen Sadowski is experienced in working in the space, there will still be limitations to the shows Green Room can perform in the Black Box.

Besides space restrictions, the Black Box only seats 120 audience members, and that is without accounting for possible restricted viewing when a large set is built. With a larger company and others involved including the pit band, more family, friends and other audience members attend. An absolute maximum of one thousand audience members spread out over four nights will no longer suffice, and the company may be forced to perform the show over two weekends, when one weekend is already complete with long hours and tiring performances.

Planning for next year is already underway, and there are mixed emotions from fine arts students regarding the future. Although separate musicals will include more students in the production and in large roles and leadership positions, there is only so much growth that the current situation can provide. Though it is uncertain what the future holds for the theatre department in the next ten years, it is clear that the split in musicals is a perfect segway into building North an auditorium.