Drama club hosts first Theatre Slam

Zoe Vongtau

Staff Writer

High school kids often stay up late into the night binge-watching comedies, dramas and crime shows. Baldwin’s Drama Club recently took this pastime to a new level.
The Theatre Slam was an overnight event in which Drama Club members spent the night in the high school writing, rehearsing and then performing their own comedic skits.
From 8 p.m. Friday, Jan. 22, to a performance at 6 p.m. the next day, students created 10-minute skits.
Audiences then voted on the crowd favorite and a Bean Jelly award recipient, a play on words on the Gene Kelly awards.
“I thought it was really funny and it looked like they were having a lot of fun,” said freshman Rachel Friedman, who attended the show.
Club sponsor Michelle Jenkins was inspired to host the Theatre Slam by her alma mater, Washington & Jefferson College, where a similar show was performed.
At the Baldwin event, various challenges added fun by either challenging or helping the groups. Winners of certain challenges won first choice for costumes and performance times. Those who lost had to incorporate random lines and props into their skits or even switch team members.
“The best part all night was the challenges,” Jenkins said.
Some challenges included human knot, dance-offs, and “pterodactyl.”
“Pterodactyl was a game where we all sat in a group and tried to say `pterodactyl’ without showing any teeth or smiling,” sophomore Aubrey Shaw said.
The night before and day of the Theatre Slam, a heavy snowfall caused many cancellations of sports and events. Most students were able to make it to the show, but teams were rearranged to accommodate the selection of teams.
“It was a cool way to meet people,” sophomore Rhealee Ferraro said.
Groups were allowed to use any props to help present their story, although club President Scott Friedman joked that most of the skits were influenced by sleep deprivation.
Shaw’s skit was about an unlikely group of people bonding over parts of their life.
“We all came together to create our own characters,” Shaw said.
In the midst of creating skits, groups were allowed some time to break and rest before continuing their work.
“We had a two-hour nap time, which was very appreciated,” Shaw said.
Other highlights of the night, according to Friedman, included waking groups up with sirens and eating tremendous amounts of junk food to keep up their energy.
With the success of the Theatre Slam this year, Jenkins hopes to make the event annual.
“We look forward to having it every January,” Jenkins said.