North Farmington High Theatre’s fall production of “Check, Please” is, at its heart, a simple love story. Producing it has proved a little more complex.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, auditions and rehearsals have all been virtual. The performances of “Check, Please”, “Check, Please: Take 2”, and “Check Please: Take 3” will be as well; it’s free to watch online one day only, from 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. on Friday, December 11.
“These are three shows that are all about a guy and a girl who go on blind dates that are all terrible,” said Michael Soverinsky, who plays the Guy. “But they find their way back to themselves.”
Senior cast members described technical issues that anyone who has been part of a Zoom meeting or remote classroom will recognize – screens freezing, wi-fi going in and out, and people forgetting to mute or unmute themselves. All things considered, though, they’re grateful.
“It was really exciting, getting to have the experience of doing the show, even if it was over a screen,” Soverinsky said.
“I feel we’re lucky to have the technology to even do a play,” Madi LaJoyce added.
Still, some aspects of the in-person experience can’t be duplicated. Soverinsky, Maryanna Lauter, and Hannah Weinraub, are trying to figure out how to take their traditional show photo together, something they’ve done since freshman year.
“I really do miss doing the live pre-show rituals… the cast party, going out to eat after,” said Lauter, who plays the Girl. “It was just very different.”
Director Stephaney Vietor said cast members found ways to connect. For instance, they used the video conferencing chat feature to praise each other’s work during rehearsals.
“They would cheer each other on through the chat, that was a really cool thing they did to keep their energy up,” she said. “My goal as a director was just to give the kids something.”
Here’s where senior cast members are going after graduation:
- Michael Soverinsky plans to attend Michigan State University and major in broadcasting communications.
- Maryanna Lauter is still auditioning and plans to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in musical theater.
- Jaidyn Mansfield plans to attend Wayne State University and pursue a degree in mortuary science.
- Hannah Weinraub is still auditioning and plans to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in musical theater.
- Madi LaJoyce is still auditioning and plans to double major in vocal performance and either business or education.
Watch the show on Friday at broadwayondemand.com/series/w5BlzPIlh7P9-check-please–north-farmington-high-school-theater-boosters. You may need to set up a free account.