January 16, 2018

Drama Dept. gives back through Holiday Benefit donations

Drama performs their annual holiday benefit and they collect donations to give back.

Greta Nerad

Staff Writer

The Mira Costa Drama Department held its annual Holiday Benefit on Dec. 5 in Costa’s small theater and donated $800 from the ticket sales and bake sale fundraiser  to the Adopt-A-Family organization.

Adopt-A-Family is a charity that raises money to buy presents for underprivileged families during the holiday season. During the benefit, approximately 40 students performed songs and skits, and 15 tech students helped behind the scenes with tasks such as controlling lights and audio.

“The benefit allowed Drama to show that we’re not just actors. We have a lot of other talents to showcase as well,” sophomore Tucker St. Ivany said. “Also, many of the students don’t have a lot of time to do the fall plays or the musical, so this show allowed us to perform acts which ranged from singing to dancing to improv to monologues without committing to months of  practice.”

Drama students performed a variety of acts including songs, comedy skits and dances all in accordance with the event’s themes of winter and the holidays such as Christmas and Hannukah.

Senior Kavita Sarathy, junior Olivia Morgan and sophomore Ella Dabney kicked off the event with a slow rendition of “Christmas Will You Stay” by Michael Mott. The Mira Costa Coterie Choir, which consists of eight students, performed a cover of “Winter Wonderland” by Felix Bernard and Richard B. Smith.

“The acts related to both Christmas and Hannukah because this group makes an effort to be inclusive. [Drama is] active-minded about making sure they are kind,” Mira Costa Coordinator of Theater Operations and Drama and Tech Executive Director Cary Jordahl said. “[All of the Drama students] really have a reputation for being inclusive and caring, in my mind.”

The show was entirely student-run, including the auditions, Jordahl said. Drama President and senior Noah Geller, Vice President and senior Ari Derambakhsh and Event Coordinator and senior Tiffany Smith helped with the audition process and organized the show.

“I was a little bit anxious when I auditioned because the Holiday Benefit, specifically, was taken a lot more seriously this year, so I knew there would be more cuts. However, I was confident in my act, so I wasn’t too nervous,” Drama student and sophomore Ansley Rowell said.

In addition to the show, The Drama and Tech Department held a corresponding bake sale during intermission and after the show to raise additional funds for Adopt-A-Family. All of the proceeds from the show and bake sale went to the charity organization, Geller said.

“This kind of event makes  a  really good amount of money, and I love that it goes to a family who really needs it,” senior Molly DeSimone said. “[The show] is a great way to bring people together for the holiday spirit while also benefiting a family in need.”

The Mira Costa Drama and Tech Department will hold auditions for its spring musical, “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” on Jan. 8 and the musical  will open on Apr. 20. The show follows a window washer named J. Pierrepont Finch, who reads a book titled “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” and follows its advice in order to climb his way up the corporate ladder.

“[‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’] is a great, very classic show with really great music, so I am very excited,” Geller said. “We have great students to choose from this year and we’re planning on having more workshops prior to the audition and during the run through to prepare us.”

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