This past week has been the start of the Woodhaven Theatre Company’s competition season. They are working on a show called “The Laramie Project. The Laramie Project tells the tragic story of Matthew Shepard, a gay man who was beaten and murdered in Laramie, Wyoming. This show is so historically accurate that every single word spoken has been either written, spoken in interviews or are actual medical or court trial records. This play was originally written and performed by the Tectonic Theatre Company of New York city. During the MIFA Theatre Competition, each company has 45 minutes to set up and perform a show. There are three rounds, districts, regionals, and states. The shows are judged by a panel based on acting, technical aspects, and displays/programs. Schools across Michigan participate in the event. Typically, there is a lot of traveling involved and the show must be planned accordingly, but this year all events must be held virtually due to COVID-19. Last year, the WTC advanced to states and won second place in all of Michigan. They are aiming to do the same this year.
We interviewed WTC member Rebekah Colon and asked her what a typical day during competition season is like. She had this to say: “A normal day during competition season usually consists of rehearsal starting at the beginning of our sixth hour Play Production class. It usually takes about an hour for everyone to get changed into their costumes and to hair and makeup. After everyone is dressed and ready we start running the show. The show lasts about 45 minutes and the backstage is usually pretty chaotic with everybody changing into different costumes since we all play multiple roles in the play. When the play finally ends, the lights fade to black and the director, Mr. Clemons, calls us to the front of the stage so he can give us notes. Usually after this we are free to go home and do it all over again the next day. Now as chaotic as this sounds it is tons of fun and it’s definitely an experience, that’s for sure.”
This show definitely seems like it’s going to be a tearjerker yet at the same time I think it will be an unforgettable show. If you would like to see the show the WTC is doing a one time showing of “The Laramie Project” on Tuesday, February 9th. The show will be starting at 7:00 P.M. and will be 5$ for students and 10$ for students. Masks and social distancing protocols will be followed and enforced throughout the performance. We hope you come and see the show!