Writer’s Showcase offers adaptation of student writing

ETHS’ 2022 Writers’ Showcase came to life on March 11 and 12 as a unique event that spotlights the work of many different artists. 

Authors and actors came together to create a theater masterpiece full of comedy, deep emotion and everything in between. The production is fully student-run and provides the opportunity for students to share a variety of their talents with the community, whether that is writing, performing or directing. The show’s process begins with writers submitting pieces, which are then chosen to be performed on stage in many separate acts. After being put on pause due to COVID-19 for the past two years, Writers’ Showcase is back in full force!

Like many cast and crew members, sophomore Luke Downs participated for his first time in the showcase this year. 

“I was looking for more acting opportunities this year. I knew the directors, and they told me that it was gonna be fun,” Downs says. “Some [performances at ETHS] are supposed to be student-run, but, somehow, [the students] only have a little bit of control over [them]. The Writers’ Showcase is more student-run than any other show.” 

Despite fostering a different environment, student-run performances can come with individual setbacks that isolate these types of shows from a typical performance. Students have less experience with their various roles in a production, and are often juggling different activities on top of the performance. 

All of the students worked extremely hard, putting in hours and hours of rehearsals to make this performance the best it could possibly be. 

“It’s really gritty, and I know everybody’s tired and exhausted, but the environment is great,” Downs says.

All students involved in the performance have to constantly keep up with mounds of school work as well as putting together huge productions without the help of adults.

“Because it is student-run, students have homework and things to do,” freshman Joss Watson says. 

On top of these typical set-backs that a student-run performance might face, COVID-19 has been a prominent obstacle in theater performances overall this year. The cast and crew have needed to take extra precautions in order to ensure the safety of everyone around them. This means physical contact with castmates and other students during rehearsals and performances are avoided at all times. 

“We have to be extra careful so that we can do as much as we can without needing to shut down,” junior Casey Bond, a co-director of Writer’s Showcase, explains.

English teacher Katherine Buck, who is overseeing Writer’s Showcase, discussed additional challenges faced this year. 

“We haven’t had an actual production of Writer’s Showcase in two years, so the only students that would really remember it are juniors, maybe, and seniors who’ve seen it in it’s full capacity, so it’s kind of a cool opportunity to get to do things our way and have a fresh start, but also it’s a challenge,” Buck explains. 

“We only have one student who’s ever been a part of it before,” Bond adds. While certain aspects of Writers’ Showcase may be given a fresh start, many things stay the same: the community and the opportunity for a plethora of different voices to be heard. 

 “We have freshman writers through senior writers, same with the actors too. It’s a unique way to get lots of students involved, especially ones who wouldn’t have considered being a part of theater before or having their writing published in that way,” Buck explains. 

As with the majority of the production team, this is Bond’s first experience with Writers’ Showcase. He explains what drew him to the show, saying, “Writer’s Showcase is a more intimate group of people, and it’s really nice to be in a smaller group that you can work with really closely.”

Writers’ Showcase is a one of a kind production for both audiences and production members alike. Students who have a role within the show have the special opportunity to create the production they want to see, whether they are writing, acting, directing or choosing the pieces themselves. Viewers get the chance to watch a unique collection of ever-changing pieces of writing, from poems to skits and short stories.