Friday, February 17, 2023

Gopher State Rumpelstiltskin forms a community

I'm always amazed how fast middle and high school students can put a play together. Especially when you consider how many other activities--sports, student council, science club, and the ever-dreaded homework--already fill their day.

Take Fairmont Junior High School in lovely Fairmont, MN. After checking out a bunch of fractured fairy tales scripts, Helena Johnson and Katie Hoaglund, who serve as co-directors, selected Rumpelstiltskin, Private Eye for the school's only show of the year (good choice!).

They held auditions on January 5, started rehearsals on January 9 and gave two enthusiastic performances this week. Not a lot of time!

But it was enough time to form some close bonds. The Fairmont Sentinel interviewed the cast members for their article promoting the play, and more than one talented young actor said the best part of the whole experience was the teamwork.

"I think it's really fun working with everybody," said Bella Coan, who plays the loquacious Snow White. "I feel like everybody is just such great people to work with."

Hailey McConnell, who plays one of snarky Cinderella's stepsisters, goes on. "I like the people involved in it, they make it a really nice community."

But then anyone who's ever been involved in theater already knows that. The rehearsals and performances might only last a few weeks. But the relationships formed can last a lifetime.