Eagan High School theater students pull off pandemic performance for virtual viewing

Eagan High School students perform during a recording of Photo: Paul Saxton/Eagan High School. Eagan High School students perform during a recording of "Les Miserables."

Ben Henry
Updated: November 22, 2020 05:48 PM
Created: November 22, 2020 12:48 PM

COVID has cut the lights on many of our arts. From live performances to art halls, the pandemic has created very difficult conditions for the arts to thrive.

Those difficulties became a challenge the Eagan High School theater program overcame, and soon you’ll be able to enjoy a new musical.

With help from the high school’s television production students and major adjustments from the cast and crew, theater students recorded their pandemic version of "Les Miserables."

“What we did is have the students sing to the audience, versus each other, we had them spaced out, and we kind of pushed everything forward and had them recognize it in record time,” said Amy Jo Cherner, Eagan High School Theater’s vocal director.

“They [the students] took it in their hands and said, ‘We need to follow these protocols,'” Cherner added.

The smaller-than-normal crew, while double-masked, had to lock in their recorded performance quickly to avoid an outbreak. Anyone can rent it for online viewing from Dec. 12 through Jan. 27.

“I didn’t even think I was going to do a musical this year," said senior cast member Finn Wallace. "I thought COVID was going to eliminate doing any theater at all."

Wallace played Inspector Javert, one of the play's leading roles.

“Actually being able to do the show is incredibly exciting for me and every other senior,” Wallace said. “It’s kind of a ray of hope, I guess, for me and it’s a really good way to close out high school.”

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