Question: What is choir like and can I join it even if I’m already in grade 10? Also, is it too much to have on my plate if I take one act and choir?
Choir is amazing class where you get to bond with all the other singers that are also in that class, regardless of age. Choir is a class that takes place after school from 3:30-5:30, usually with a 5-10 minute break in between. I would say from my experience that not only are you able to bond with other people, you’re also able to become more open and learn many aspects about you that you’ve never noticed before. It doesn’t matter what grade you in when you join choir because if it’s your first year doing choir, you’ll automatically be put in choir 10 (unless you’re in grade 9).
Regarding Musical and One Act, from a TECH PERSPECTIVE, as long as you are able to manage your time wisely, it will not be too hard to handle. Tech for musical usually starts around October (September is usually when the actors start) and that’s when we usually learn about all the lights, the audio boards, and all the positions within the tech crew. Over the course of 3-4 months, both techs and actors bond together like a family. For One Act, tech starts generally around mid to late March. Then a couple weeks before performances start, we get our role and will be put in a play for that specific role. Although I can’t say much about the acting perspective of musical and one act, I will say that overall, it was not very difficult to manage everything. If you are going to try out for Musical or One Act, I’d suggest that (FROM A TECH PERSPECTIVE):
1. Always have homework with you. There are times when we won’t be needed to do something very important so that would be the best time to review or do some homework.
- Let the teachers know beforehand! Ask them for your homework a week in advance if you can so you are able to pull ahead of the class so you’re all caught up when musical or one act is done instead of trying to catch up after it’s all done. That way, you can ask your teachers or peers to help you with anything you need.
- Make sure you do have the time in your schedule to come on weekends because both actors and techs have to go to school on some weekends to rehearse as well.
As long as you are able to manage time wisely and are very organized with all your subjects, especially if you’re taking AP, I feel that it would not be too much on your plate. Many people in choir doing both Musical or One Act as well so it’s honestly a great experience! Hope to see you try out for both musical and one act next year! Choir too! Break a leg!
Daniel: What it really comes down when taking any kind of after school performing arts is:
Do I have the time and commitment to do all of these while keeping up with academics?
As someone who was a part of these for two years, it is definitely risky being after school every single day of the week (even weekends if you do One Act) because you are decreasing the amount of time you have to get work done. You do also miss a week of school during performances. Although, it is encouraged in One Act and Musical that if you have nothing important to do, do homework. From my experience of doing the technical side of One Act compared to acting last year, tech does require you to stay later than the actors but it’s a really cool experience. In the end, it really is up to how you manage your time and energy. What’s really important is knowing yourself and your limits.
Don’t let these bring you down though!! Being part of the performing arts family is one of the best things you’ll never regret. Not only do you learn about ways to improve your craft, but also ways to improve your own life. Truly, the amount of growth you get from these experiences are unbelievable. Ms. Orchard has worked hard to develop a community where we can all be joyful despite the troubles outside that drama room door. It’s true that we all bond and become a very tight family. If you ever need help, many people in this family are there to help because we are sort of going through the same act of balancing (pun intended). I’ve done One Act, Choir, and Musical for the past two years and what I’ve concluded is that staying on top of academics isn’t that difficult even if you’re in AP. On the note of workload, there are tests involved such as memorization and knowing the notes and rhythm of the songs which again shouldn’t be that difficult if time is budgeted correctly. It really isn’t much but a lot of time is sacrificed. Also, if you’re really dedicated to stay in the arts, it is a great motivation to stay on top of school. I’m looking forward to potentially seeing you in the drama room and having you in the fam!!
My experience being in drama or in fact taking other performing arts like choir, one act, musical, etc. is such an honor. You learn new skills, you create a family, meet new people who will not judge you and accept you for who you are, and last, but not least, you are being taught by teachers that care and by teachers that know what they are doing (they specifically studied and majored in these classes!). Don’t let this opportunity pass you by.
BUT, I must admit it takes a lot of commitment. Some people can handle the school workload and take on extra curricular classes, but for others it can be quite difficult. I suggest you take the time to think about whether or not you’re responsible enough to add more things on your “to-do” list. There will be times where it is possible to finish some homework during rehearsal (depending on what you’re planning to take) but most of the time homework will have to be done at home and you may have to stay up at ungodly hours of the night or even morning to finish it. As someone who is going on in grade 11 as well, I cannot say it will be easy juggling everything but whatever performing arts course you take, I guarantee you will have a life-changing experience you’ll never forget.
When do They Start & End?
Choir is for the whole school year (September – June) and there is practice every Tuesday (for Girls) and Wednesday (for Guys) at lunch
Musical is in the first semester (September – December)
One Act is in the second semester (February – May)