Students prop up 'Noises Off'

Did you know students build theater sets at USN?
By Jim Manning, Technical Theater Director, Arts Department Co-Chair

USN students stepped up in unprecedented ways for the High Schooll fall production of "Noises Off." High School Theater Director Lily Palmer had students eager to take on props (Henry Gatto '25, Holden Oliphant '23), costumes (Kari Belle King '24), assistant director and stage manager (MP King '22), and assistant stage manager (Daniel Stark '23). These students took on a lot of responsibilities that have been handled by adults in the past, and they rose to the challenge.  
 
Meanwhile, Technical Theater Director Jim Manning designed this show three times before, so he had his Technical Theater class design the set. This set was a doozy. It had eight doors, two stories, and the whole thing had to turn around backward. The class rose to the occasion and the build was aided by the Middle School Technical Theater classes.  
 
That was all well and good until Manning got COVID-19 and was quarantined at home for 10 days. Trying to give directions on how to build the set to substitute teachers became problematic. But several students in his HS Tech Theater class rose to the occasion. Seniors Lawson Berman '22 and Jonathan Nichols '22 not only led the HS class through the build but also came into school on their conference days to guide the MS classes through the build.  
 
Students took on many extra responsibilities, whether planned or unplanned. They proved their readiness time and again through their dependability, eagerness, and willingness to go the extra mile. "Noises Off" was a show within a show where everything is crashing down around the actors, but thanks to our USN students, that was not the case for this production.
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    • Middle and High School students build the sets for their theater performances in the Auditorium.

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