Omaha South High’s theater department presented 10-minute plays as their first production since the COVID-19 pandemic began. The plays were filmed and presented online, as the audience was limited under current health and safety guidelines.
Isabel Gott, a senior at Omaha South, and the rest of South’s visual and performing arts students have not performed since fall 2019.
“It was really exciting. I was really happy to be on stage with my friends and get a chance to captivate an audience again; it’s one of the greatest feelings,” Gott said.
The actors followed the CDC and school guidelines to stay safe, including wearing masks and staying 6-feet apart. “Honestly, it’s not that bad, I’ve been doing things with a mask for pretty much over a year now, and the last few months I’ve been double masking and dancing and singing, so I’m pretty much used to it by now,” Gott said.
While the performances were filmed so they could be viewed online, a small audience was allowed to watch the plays in person.
“We actually did get a chance to perform for people. They were all 6 feet apart, but it was still a different experience,” Gott said. “We definitely had to wait to see if the jokes would land and since people were spread out more, it felt like there wasn’t a lot of people.”
Gott stated one of the biggest problems was the production of sound, given that every performer was speaking through a mask, but the cast was provided with mics to help with projection. This production was especially meaningful for Gott because she had the opportunity to perform alongside her sister, Amirah. It is not common for siblings to perform together, but the Gott sisters fortunately had the opportunity to share the stage.
“Even with these productions, we never had a chance to be in the same show together, but we did bow next to each other which was fun. She really enjoys it and I’m glad we did something together before I graduate,” Gott said. Gott misses performing in front of a huge audience, the energy of the crowd and the adrenaline rush she gets before the show.
“I really miss having a reactive audience and the rush of hearing the crowd before a show. The last show I felt like that was Putnam County last year, and I still remember the adrenaline rush before I popped out of the back curtain,” Gott said. “I can’t wait for theater to get back to that.”