15 Nov, 2019
10 : 00
With shows scheduled for Thursday, 5th and Friday 6th December in the Yew Chung International School of Beijing’s Auditorium, the cast of “Elf Jr”. is rehearsing tirelessly to ensure that a high-quality production is staged for its audience who will consist of teachers, parents, fellow schoolmates as well as members of the wider community.
When selecting the cast for the play, some of the traits Ms. Freda Humber, Drama Teacher and the play’s Director was looking for in actors was multiple skills and a positive attitude. “We were not only looking for natural talent, we were also looking people who were coachable” she stated. In addition to that “we were also looking for triple threats: students who could dance, sing and most importantly, act.”
However, this did not prevent the director and her team from selecting actors who displayed great potential “Some kids are stronger in one skill than another, so we tried to match the role they were auditioning for with their capabilities” added Ms. Humber.
With the cast made up of experienced and first-time stage performers, we spoke to some of them to find out why they decided to join the play and the preparation that goes into each role.
On why they auditioned:
Alicia Seng (Y11): Plays Emily Hobbs“I have stage fright and every time I get on stage I don’t know what to say, so I took this opportunity to improve on that and also, I really enjoy acting and singing.”
Saraphina Wald (Y8): Plays Jovie“I like to act, sing and dance, so I wanted to grab this opportunity since I hadn’t had any other opportunities like this before.”
Greta Danninger (Y5): Plays Shawanda“Because musicals are fun and we get to act, dance and sing.”
Preparing for their roles:GD:“I usually just practice the scenes when I have time, like after school, during practice and at home.”
Luli Podesta (Y9): Plays Charlotte Dennon, the reporter“My role involves a lot of singing and dancing, so after the auditions I watched the original musical and listened to many of the songs in the play. I also listen to and watch my character so see and listen to how she pronounces words.”
On similarities between the actors and their rolesGD: “We are different because I don’t have long hair and I am not an Elf, but the similarities are that we both have blue eyes and blonde hair.”
AS:“My character is similar to me because we are both like older figures and that gives me a better perspective on things.”
On their favourite parts in the musical:Sydney Seinfeld (Y8): Plays Michael Hobbs“I like all the parts I am in, but I really like the beginning with all the elves, because they are dancing and singing and I think the little kids look very cute when they are dancing.”
On the camaraderie between different year levels:GD: “I enjoyed working with the older students because they help us.”SS: “Some of the younger kids like to come up to us and say hi during school hours, and they call us by our stage names.”
Why people should come watch the show:“They will see the effort we put into the play and they will see how we resemble the characters and they will smile.”Alicia Seng
“It is a comedy, so it’s going to be funny and for people who like musicals and music, they will really like it.”Saraphina Wald
“It is funny and fun and I want my parents to see how good my acting skills are, and because it’s going to be the best show in Beijing!”Malia Meng
“It’s performed just by kids and it’s something different and interesting. And instead of going to the theatre to watch the movie, you can see kids perform it in real life.”Evangeline Wald
All cast members are excited to be part of the play and are looking forward to welcoming the holiday season with you there!