Harlequins Perform on Zoom

The+upperclassmen+cast+of+Emma

The upperclassmen cast of Emma

Emma Flannery ‘21

Rehearsals were in full swing for the fall play, “Emma” by Jane Austen. Following, COVID guidelines, the production was to be completely socially distant, with actors using face masks on stage and masks off stage. The production would be filmed and then presented to Saint Ignatius via a youtube live premiere. Then, the very thing the Harlequins were fighting to prevent struck. An actor was exposed to the virus in a class, and had to quarantine for 14 days. The catch: the performance was to be filmed in 4 days, and the filming couldn’t be moved. In true 2020 fashion, the production was moved to zoom. “I was looking forward to performing Emma onstage,” says senior Evelyn Mulchrone, “and was disappointed when we had to move the production to zoom.” Mulchrone had been cast as Emma Woodhouse and was looking forward to one of her last performances on stage as a Saint Ignatius Harlequin. However, she said “I am happy that we are able to continue to make art under these strange circumstances.” Fellow senior Coco Pietsch credits director of the show, Mr. Bellie, and the Harlequins spirit of camaraderie for pulling together a zoom performance on such short notice. She says, “Mr. Bellie was so encouraging and everyone’s enthusiasm made me really excited about [the zoom production], and it ended up being a really cool experience.” From transporting costumes back home to using virtual backgrounds and more than one ring light ordered via amazon, the show came together successfully. President of the Harlequins troupe, Charise Pisani, says, “We are all very happy with how the production turned out and are more well-rounded actors because of these setbacks!” Ms. Pisani raises a good point: maybe these COVID-19 challenges are making us better in our respective fields. Perhaps, that cancelled soccer tournament makes students better at dealing with disappointment. The cancelled ACTs may make juniors and seniors better writers. Overall, in these weird and – dare I say it – unprecedented times, perhaps we are becoming stronger, more well-rounded people.