Behind the Scenes of Seussical: The Musical

With Seussical at an end here is a rundown on the hard work the cast, crew, and director put into the show.

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Behind the Scenes of Seussical: The Musical

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Do the titles Horton Hears a Who, Green Eggs and Ham, or How the Grinch Stole Christmas trigger a certain soft spot in your memories? Well, they should. Widely beloved by children and teenagers alike, Dr. Seuss helped teach us the importance of imagination. As an homage for writing the stories of our childhood, it seemed only fitting that the arts rewarded him with one of the most fantastic displays of creativity: a musical.

In case you’ve ignored the constant murmur among the halls, Rogers has committed to honoring this legend by performing Seussical: The Musical. Yes, that means that there is singing included, and yes, the songs will get stuck in your head. However, there’s more to Seussical than just a couple of sustained chords; behind the playground of a set, a talented musical ensemble attentively chimes in to support the various activities on stage.

Along with this, the lights and soundboard play an active role in aiding the audience to understand the tone and intensity of each moment. Collectively, the actors, director, and instrumental director agree that the most difficult part of putting together the musical was, “getting everything lined up.” With all of these moving parts, it’s simple to assume that an immense amount of hard work was poured into this production.

imagine you get no sleep, you have 15 tests a day, you have no coffee, no redbull, no breaks, and you want to punch everybody and everybody wants to punch you, but you’re not allowed to.”

— Jaelin Harmon

To attach a quantitative number to it, the director of the play, Paul Hill, threw a rough estimate out and concluded that he spent, “well over 200 hours” over the course of the 7 weeks the musical has been prepared. As for the actors, they committed “3 [to] 4 hours after school” for the first few weeks of rehearsal.

As if this wasn’t already a lot, the final week of rehearsals before opening night, infamously known as “tech week,” drives everyone to their limits. Some students even report staying at school, “until 10:30.” To aid in understanding the true horror of tech week, Jaelin Harmon, a member of the lighting crew, said to, “imagine you get no sleep, you have 15 tests a day, you have no coffee, no redbull, no breaks, and you want to punch everybody and everybody wants to punch you, but you’re not allowed to.”

Truthfully, tech week is when the performers are the busiest, leaving little time for leisurely Netflix binges. Although the stress runs high during these final days of preparation, the cast and crew assure they’re still alive and well by displaying stellar levels of enthusiasm and energy when showtime comes.

In fact, this exorbitant energy is exactly why Hill decided on Seussical for this fall’s production. He justified his choice by saying, “we just have a bunch of really energetic actors, and I needed to pick this show now.” Despite the overwhelming energy of the group, hard work still proved necessary to their success. Working against them was the reality that musicals are more difficult than plays, as far as coherence goes.

As Hill put it, “musicals are harder to put on [because] there are so many pieces”. From the pit orchestra to the stage crew to the actors themselves, it’s obvious why musicals give directors more of a challenge.

Of course, these challenges come with great rewards, and the hours upon hours poured into this production were clearly worth the passionate performance of the drama department. Oh, the great thinks you can think about Seussical: The Musical!