So here's the break down... DTASC
alright... so DTASC is a theatre competition that schools from Southern California enter. Well at our school here's how it works. In early October there was this sign-up sheet for students to direct scenes to enter into the competition. The scenes can only be student directed. There were a few categories you can do.
Well there was a tech category (lighting, costume, set, etc.) but no one from our school entered although i believe 2 or 3 people at our school do have the talent to win in those categories. The performance categories are Large Group Drama, Audition Monologues, Large Group Comedy, World Theatre, Horror/Sci-fi/Fantasy, One Acts, and Musical.
The student directors got to pick the categories they wanted to direct.
So the breakdown of what categories went from our school is this:
~Two Audition Monologues: i dont remember where the two girls got there's from...one was from the Crucible though... for the monologues, the guidelines are to pick two contrasting monologues...so for example, one would be depressing and the other would be exhuberent... i guess its to show you're acting ability...
~Large Group Drama: they did The Elephant Man
~One Act: um i think it was called Borrowed Parts...it was really good...i loved it...
~Horror/Sci-fi/Fantasy: i was in this one and we were an all female cast and we did The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allen Poe
~Musical: they did Next To Normal which was absolutely amazing!
so after the directors held like a mini-audition to see how we acted, they cast us into our parts... like i said...i was cast in The Tell-Tale Heart...i played one of the cops. and then rehearsals began!
We rehearsed everyday at lunch and then on Thursday of this past week, we held a showcase of all of our scenes that we were taking to the competition at night. It was fun and that was my very first time performing in front of an audience. I could literally feel my heart pumping in my chest, but after i started moving on stage, i forgot about my nerves.
So yesterday...i woke up at 5:45am and got ready to go to school. I arrived and we departed at about 6:45...we watched the sun rise in the bus. The school where the competition was being held was this HUGE school for performing arts and although it had a big campus and an amazing theatre, the outside felt like you were in a prison yard. The walls needed some color and they badly needed grass....but other than that, it was a good school. and so the competition began!
Oh! first thing i should mention.... the rules for the Horror/Sci-fi/Fantasy category is that your scene must be student directed, has a time limit of 5 mins, must not have costumes or make-up (as cops we just wore all black), and the only props we're allowed to use is up to 4 chairs... now i'll get into the chairs a bit later.
We went to our first room with our first set of judges and performed and watched the other performances...we werent too worried about that room.... the next room we went to for the second set of judges was just terrible! Everyone was so talented we just looked at each other like "Oh my gosh!"...then it was lunch time.... we ate and then headed over to the main area place where they announced who would move on to semi-finals. As we stood there in the hot sun for about half an hour...we were nervous...but finally they threw the butcher paper that had all the school codes (we were FT...we're not allowed to used our school names while we're there to prevent bias from judges that may know us) and there it was! FT! we had made it to semi's!!! :D Not only had we made it, but one of our people that were doing monologues made it, the one-act made it, our drama made it, and the musical made it! it was great!
Then we went to perform in front of the semi-finals judges and boy was there pressure in that room. It was very nerve-racking... we got through it without any mistakes so that was good... then we had to go out and wait in the hot sun again to see if we made it to finals... now i'm being completely serious... i dont think i've ever been this nervous in my life... we stood there..the four of us, surrounded by everyone else that came from our school and we held hands and waited for the butcher paper to be thrown over the little balcony thingy...They threw over our category's paper and there it was! blocked by the hand of the guy holding it! FT! we SCREAMED and hugged each other for like 5 minutes... i was like crying! i dont think i've ever felt so accomplished in my life! it felt so good to have so many people congratulating us...too bad only us and the musical made it to finals...but hey! we got to represent our school in two categories...
So now the pressure was really on as we were waiting to perform for the finals judges! that was SCARY! but once we got up there...i felt like we did pretty good!
oh i think now is a good time to explain about the chairs.. so we're allowed up to 4 chairs in our scene and you can do whatever you want with them....well the more creative you are...the better it works towards you...so our director devised these really fetchin' chair tricks for the killing of the old man and the smothering of him, and the hiding of the body.... we also did this this where we pounded our hands against our chests to make the sound of a heartbeat...because that is a recurring thing that pops up in our scene...
Well i mean we didnt win a trophy...we got an honorable mention for making it to the finals so we got a plaque but you know what...we were all totally okay with it... The two groups who won 1st and 2nd place truly deserved it. Alice in Wonderland won 2nd place and they had the accents down perfectly and the acting was just amazing! and for first place...it was Dracula and it was like this version that had only been performed i think three times before and while i was watching it...i was truly scared...the acting was phenomenal and just the screams and everything they did...it was truly a horror and i think i would have been upset if it hadnt won...
so i was very proud of myself that we made it to finals my first time there...and just proud of everyone! :)
so i shall say goodbye because i have homework to do...
oh! i was going to say! in our first room for our first and second performance it was sooo CREEPY! on one wall there was this huge poster of Edgar Allen Poe on the wall and it was a freaky picture of him...then on the back wall there was a raven and a little figuring on Edgar Allen Poe with a little raven on his shoulder...and on the front wall...there was a poster of like great male authors....and Edgar Allen Poe was there too....it was like he was haunting us! it was SCARY! my friend who plays the crazy man leaned over to me between two scenes and said "Oh my gosh. I swear i just delivered my the whole scene to the raven in the back." It was hilarious! but creepy that we got put into that room...while doing the scene we were doing...
If you've never read The Tell-Tale Heart.... i suggest you do...it truly is a GREAT short story and i'd definitely recommend it...
True! Nervous...very very dreadfully nervous...I had been and am...but why must you say that I am mad?
If you would like to read the original story here's the link!
and here is an amazing animation that i love...James Mason narrates it... it is just so well done! it gives you a good feel of what our scene was like...what the atmosphere felt like... Watch and Enjoy!