Wednesday, June 1, 2011

A Few of My Favorite... People

30 May 2011

This past weekend, HOPAC put on our own rendition of selected pieces of The Sound of Music.  We called it "A Few of My Favorite Things." (And depending on what version of English you speak, you may feel the need to add a U into that "favourite" word...)  It not only served as a fundraiser for our new playground, but it was also a wonderful chance for amazing people from the whole community to work together in a joint project.  Think kindergarteners, high-schoolers and graduated students, parents, teachers, principals, and even our director all on stage at the same time!  It's been a long process and a lot of work (everything really worth doing is!).  But when it all came together on stage... it was totally worth it.

I got to help choreograph the "puppet" scene from when the Von Trapp kids are putting on a show for their father.
Cue the music... ♫ Odl lay hee hoo! ♫
                                               and the kids...
                                                                and off we go!
Here's a snapshot tour of the amazing performance they did.

the lonely goatherd... one of my great 3rd graders!
yodeling like a pro... puppet!
the goats arrive...
all the people around the town hearing our yodeler call
♫ A prince on the bridge of a castle moat...
Men on a boat with a load to tote...
Men in the midst of a table d'hote...
Men drinking beer with the foam afloat...  ♫
a little girl in the pale pink coat arrives... and hears... and answers... :)
but soon her "mama with a gleaming gloat" catches ear of something...
and isn't happy!
Now imagine getting a third grade boy and a fourth grade girl to dance together.  I'm not sure the word "cooties" has entered the HOPAC school vocabulary, but the concept is definitely there regardless.  My remedy?  "I promise that if you only touch arms while you skip around each other, you have my full permission to run off opposite sides of the stage afterward!"  It worked, they looked great, and I'm pretty sure they even had fun along the way!  Just don't tell them I said that... :)
♫ Happy are they lady ho lady lee ho, ho lady ho lady lady ho
Soon the duet will become a trio, lady odl lay odl loo! ♫
Yes, this was the night when one of the eyes fell off the goat mask. 
A sad moment for the imaginary goat... but lots of laughter for everyone involved!
This was definitely a new experience for me.  I've done my tiny bit of acting - a line or two of speaking, a front-walkover and the splits, in seventh grade for Bye Bye Birdie - and that was enough.  I was excited to help choreograph this because, as you know, dancing is something I love.  In the midst of it all, I discovered two things: 1. While I have a pretty good idea of how to teach dance and body movement (think being limp like a puppet), I realized I know NOTHING about acting.  Or teaching kids how to work on stage.  And 2. Theater is not my thing. As in, it's definitely not a life-giving activity that I feel energized from afterword. 

The good news is, I got to see my kiddos do a great job on stage.  I worked with some amazing people, made new friends, and had a lot of fun along the way!  And most importantly, we made some great memories before I head off to my next adventure... ones I will remember for a long, long time.

For those of you who aren't quite as keen on yodeling, I've included a few other snapshots from the play (with special thanks to Gil Medina for sharing these since my own camera died...).  Or, you can go on my FB and see the whole album linked there.  Enjoy!

The nuns
My dear friend Grace, our very own Maria!
Our very NON-Austrian collection of children! :)
The lovely Liesel and Friedrich (Lauren and Isaiah) in...
♫ 16 going on 17 ♫
The amazingly TOUGH musicians... half of whom had a fever and the flu all day Saturday and stuck it out for both performances anyway!

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