Actors Reflect on Theater Season’s End

Junior+Michael+McEvoy+%28left%29+performs+in+the+spring+play+%22Unplugged%22+with+Jensen+Walcott%2C+Lacey+Tavis%2C+and+Mack+Grimes.

Junior Michael McEvoy (left) performs in the spring play "Unplugged" with Jensen Walcott, Lacey Tavis, and Mack Grimes.

Advertisement

With the end of the school year comes many a tear shed or the possible lesson learned. With that in mind, how can one forget to observe the end of after-school activities? The baseball field no longer a home to its former players, the band uniforms to be cycled on to the newest introductions, and the auditorium, now losing its cast until next fall.    

What can one do to deal with such a sudden drop in their schedule? For the thespians of Basehor-Linwood High School especially, the shock in their day-to-day goings-on is so sudden that the actors’ guild may be left with little to do. Perhaps more time could now be granted to the rest and relaxation of a well-deserving teenager?

That pitiful assumption would be incorrect in the case of senior Claudia Jacobs. During her dedicated theater hours this year, she managed to juggle vocal and acting lessons and a job with rehearsals for the productions. Such a varied schedule may give one the feeling that they need to choose one activity and stick with it.

“I didn’t necessarily have to choose…” Outside the library entrance, Claudia leans against the cool white bricks.

She lists her crammed schedule – not in a way that shows distress or annoyance though, as one may suspect with such appointments to keep. Jacobs uses her fingers to proudly list the responsibilities she manages to keep up with.

Junior Michael McEvoy, on the other hand, followed a slightly different path. His trail was one trodden upon by the thumping feet of the distance track team. This semester, Michael decided to do both track and the plays.

Doing track and [theater] at the same time really cut me off from doing any other extracurricular activities.”

— Michael McEvoy

“Doing track and [theater] at the same time really cut me off from doing any other extracurricular activities,” he says.

One can gather that a hard day of acting and running can put a more than mild drag on the energy levels of any student. Any right-minded person would go home and be done with it, throwing themselves on the bed and giving themselves a brief few seconds to meditate before any school work was given attention.

Speaking of school work, what would suffer in the mix of track, plays and homework? Could one check one out for the other, only to scramble to catch back up when they felt able? Michael suffered from a far more dangerous beast, one that fuels the very lives we live.

I would never do anything different… It’s kinda depressing. I miss everyone, and I miss the connections.”

— Claudia Jacobs

“Probably sleep. Procrastinating doesn’t help when trying to get your homework done at 9 p.m.”

Claudia describes the time and effort she put in tirelessly to ensure that every production she starred in had her full support. So much effort driven at one target may lead to straying in grades or other pursuits.

“Grades did slip a little bit, because you get home and you’re so exhausted and there is no time for homework.” She laughs nervously, then sighs at the amount of sleep that she has regained with the end of the last production.

With the plays and musicals over and done with, the captives are released. Those who were lacking in sleep may now snooze past 5:00 a.m. The grades that slipped may now be rectified, and they may now simply revel in their newly acquired free time.

One could compare (with a stretch) the feeling of ending this year of productions to the feeling of a wild bobcat being let out of a pen. The creature now yearns for a new prey to stalk or feat to complete. Michael will likely go on to use his new free time to pursue many a valuable skill, or help out around the house.

“Sleeping went from eight hours every night. Yeah, now I have more time to go home and play games and be generally useless.” 

Was such torment worth it, though? How can someone treat a natural sleep cycle like a rarity? Is it not some great injustice upon teenagers that the lives we lead drain our developing bodies of any remaining energy?

Claudia Jacobs ends reflectively; she seems ready to cry seeing as she has just completed her last production at BLHS.

“I would never do anything different… It’s kinda depressing. I miss everyone, and I miss the connections,” she says.

Luckily, the true motivation can be found among the sleep deprivation and endangered grades, the people behind the productions at BLHS are what bring people back. Whether because of their families’ applause, their friends’ camaraderie, or the guidance of Ms. Knowles, the students seem to love the shows.

“But it’s nice to go home, nap and not have to get up at five and go to rehearsal,” Claudia says.