Chamblee OnStage Returns After a Long Wait in the Wings

Millie Gotsch, Staff Writer

Chamblee OnStage has successfully completed its first production this school year. Students from Chamblee were encouraged to buy tickets and come watch one of the three shows put on.

The show is ‘All Together Now ‘, which is a ton of different songs and pieces that have been donated by the people who made them. So it’s a bunch of different songs from a bunch of different shows that have been put together so that theater programs can perform them as a fundraiser. There’s not a plot but there are more than a dozen different songs that are done in sequence,” said Willow Kleinfelter (‘22), who attended two of the three shows.

A large audience proved to be the key in completing the Chamblee OnStage fundraiser.

It was like a fundraiser to get the theater and musical part of Chamblee back up and running, I suppose. They partnered with chorus and I think the drama class to do this,” said Ryann Callaway (‘23). “There was one on Friday and then there were two on Saturday. The one I went to on Saturday was at 7 pm.”

While all of the performances proved to be popular, the Friday evening performance drew the biggest crowd.

“Friday was definitely our biggest night, and we didn’t have as many people at the Saturday matinee because people just don’t come to a matinee. But on Friday night, we had a very big response. We had to hold for 15 minutes because there was a line of people at the door just waiting to get seated and buying tickets. So yeah, Friday night had the best turnout, but all the shows were good,” said Kieran Mayer (‘22), a member of the ‘All Together Now’ crew. 

While the show attracted a large audience, the number of people on the cast and crew was also sizable. 

“All of Ms. Lirette’s fourth, sixth and seventh period, musical theater, and chorus kids were in it, which is about 75 people on its own. Then we had extra drama people coming in, we had extra crew people who came from outside of class, so that’s probably about 80-85 people, and then with other adults […] it’s probably close to 90,” said Mayer.

There were COVID precautions put in place to decrease the risk of infection among theatergoers.

Groups that did not ask to sit together were not put together, there were always seats put in between everyone. masks were required and provided, all of the performers wore masks at all times. That’s all that comes to mind. Oh, and then we were encouraged to spend as little time as possible meeting in the lobby afterward, and we were encouraged to do that outside where it’s safer,” said Kleinfelter.

The production was the first for Chamblee OnStage post-pandemic, which, while being an important milestone, led to some complications.

“All of the equipment had not been touched in a while, and a lot of things did not work. So, most of the time that we would normally spend setting up cues and prepping everything was just spent trying to fix our equipment. So we didn’t have time to rehearse with the working equipment which we normally would do for a production like this,” said Mayer.

Many struggles were faced in the development of the show, but all were met with resolution as the cast, crew, and set worked to overcome the challenges.

I’m the proudest that we managed to make everything come together, just because doing a show is very difficult. But for the amount of people that this show contains, being able to put all the pieces together with so many people was very complex and complicated, and there were a lot of difficulties with it. When not everyone can meet together at certain times, it’s very challenging to be able to do a number where you have like 80 people on the stage to get everyone in placements and voice parts together,” said Mayer. “There are so many big pieces that we didn’t realize we needed, there was just an insane amount of work that was put in but didn’t necessarily get recognized with a credit or a title. But most of the people know who they are and know what they did, and it took an insane amount of energy and heart in general for everyone to get it together in time.”

Thanks to the effort put in by everybody involved, the first production put on this year by Chamblee OnStage leaves audiences waiting in anticipation for the next show.