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Journal Writing Project: No time like show time


By Emily Brumm

Fri, Dec 20th, 2013
Posted in All Journal Student Writing Project

There are many advantages of attending a small school. In large schools students usually are forced to pick one group or activity to focus on. Small schools give students, like me, a chance to be involved in a wide range of extracurricular activities. For most, these things include everything from sports to yearbook to drama club.

One of the most exciting activities for me this time of year is One Act. For those of you who don’t know, One Act is a play competition that includes schools from all over the area. Every school chooses a one act play to perform in front of an audience and three judges. Like any other competition there are strict rules each play must adhere to. These rules, just like sports, are set by the Minnesota State High School League. They include simple rules from no play can last longer than 35 minutes to small intricate rules like no real food, beverages, or anything that may spill is allowed to be used.

There are two competitions before the final state competition. In the sub-section competition the top two schools advance. After that, the section competition, allows only one team to move on. At state things change, however. They don’t place the schools. Instead they star them. If the judges believe a school has presented an exceptional play, they award them a star.

Though they are short, cast and crew alike put hours of hard work and preparation into these plays. One of the advantages I’ve had going to a school with a small drama department is getting to be involved in all aspects. This means I learn everything, including set construction, acting, stage makeup techniques, how to style hair, how to put on wigs, lights, and sound. Though it means a lot of extra work and time, I’m glad I am able to be a part of all aspects of the production.

It’s hard for me to even imagine how my life would be without sports, theatre, student council, and all the other events I enjoy in my off-time. Though small schools do have disadvantages like any other school, I am thankful for the unique opportunities I get. I think in my future, having been a part of so many things will benefit me and make me a better rounded individual. Throughout my many years in theatre I have enjoyed playing every part, from romantic Shakespearean characters to murderous old women.

Emily Brumm is a student at Mabel-Canton High School. She is one of 8 area students participating in the Journal Writing Project, now in its fifteenth year.

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