Despite drastic changes due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual homecoming musical is still a go at Oklahoma Christian University.
This year’s musical medley, Songs America Sings: Cinderella and Friends, will take place on Thursday, Nov. 5, and Saturday, Nov. 7, at 8:00 p.m.
Sophomore Destiny Moyer is performing in the medley and said she is looking forward to performing, even though the performance will look different.
“I’m really excited to put on a show this year despite all the questions going in with COVID and things like that,” Moyer said.
Originally planning for a Cinderella musical, the Oklahoma Christian theater department had to change quickly when the coronavirus prevented them from putting on a full-fledged musical.
Freshman Cayden Abrams spoke about her first homecoming musical appearance.
“I’ll be honest, this first musical was not exactly what I had in mind when we had our auditions,” Abrams said. “Of course, everyone in the department was wanting to do Cinderella the Musical, so when we found out we couldn’t do that because of COVID, we were all disappointed. However, I’m loving the experience.”
This year’s show will feature a mashup of popular Disney songs from various shows, movies and stories. Abrams described it as “a cabaret and show-choir type of show.”
“Pocahontas, Aladdin, Hunchback of Notre Dame, Zootopia, Brave, Tarzan, Mary Poppins, of course Cinderella and many more,” Abrams said. “Some are classic Disney songs from the movies or musicals, and some are songs most aren’t familiar with.”
Alive but socially-distanced and masked audience will be allowed for both showings this upcoming week.
Actors are required to wear masks on stage and social distancing will be practiced during the dance numbers as well.
Moyer spoke about the COVID-19 regulations.
“It is definitely an obstacle,” Moyer said. “Singing and acting with masks on is a lot harder than you think, but it seems to make us stronger. We have gotten used to it and are really having fun despite the challenges.”
Moyer said the limited in-person audience and the possibility of a large live streaming audience has changed her acting techniques.
“For the live streamers, we have to make everything bigger and more noticeable,” Moyer said.
Abrams said she feels positive about the changes due to COVID-19.
“Although it’s not what we wanted, we are all having a good time with what we can,” Abrams said.
Moyer said the rehearsals for Songs America Sings are reportedly very different from previous years.
“With it not being as big of a production, things like blocking and planning aren’t as time-consuming,” Moyer said. “We get to focus more on the singing and dance aspects, which is what this show really highlights.”
Both Moyer and Abrams agree the difficulties with the coronavirus throughout this process has made the department stronger and closer.
“The whole thing with COVID, masks and stuff like that is definitely an obstacle, but it has made us stronger,” Moyer said.
“The practices are long and it takes dedication, but this department is like a family and I’m excited to be a part of it,” Abrams said.
The first showing of Songs America Sings with Cinderella and Friends is on Thursday, Nov. 5, with the second and final showing on Saturday, Nov. 7. Tickets are completely free for both the in-person showing and the live stream at oc.edu/live.