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The Branson High School Theatre Department production of Metamorphoses opens at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 11, and will have repeat performances on Nov. 12 and 13.

The Branson High School Theatre Department invites audiences to join them as they open their newest production this week, Metamorphoses.

The play, based on a poem by Roman poet Ovid, was written and originally directed by Mary Zimmerman. Branson High School Theatre Teacher and Director Erin Moody explained the play is the retelling of several different Greek myths.

“Some things are modernized and some are still more of that classic style. It’s a nice short play. It’s only about an hour and 15 minutes long and there is no intermission for this show,” Moody said. “Something else very cool and different about this play is that we actually have a pool of water not the set and our actors will act in the water in every scene. The water symbolizes change or metamorphoses. Each of the characters that go through a positive or negative change, experience that through this motif of water on stage, so that is something cool and different about this show.”

When selecting the production they would do this fall, Moody said she was looking to find a show that would be a new challenge for herself and students. 

“The way that this play is set up, it is broken up into eight different scenes and I have a different student director for each of the scenes,” Moody said. “They have taken on so much leadership and so much responsibility. They helped do all the blocking, a lot of the characterization, the research behind these characters and who they are and what their goals are. It’s been a really fun way to get my kids fired up about directing in the theatre.”

On top of there being student directors, Moody said she also has students who are also in charge of other facets of the production.

“There is some music in it and some dance movements, some contemporary dance style in it. All of the music and all of the dance that you will see has been done by students,” Moody said. “I had a student do the composition of the music and a student come up with all the contemporary dances they’ll see on stage. When I say this is a student-led production, this has been one of the most student-led productions that I’ve ever done and it’s made it so fun.”

Due to the pandemic last fall, Moody opted to do a production with a smaller cast. For Metamorphoses, there are more than two dozen students involved.

“They all play at least two different characters on stage. So maybe on scene one they play one different narrator and maybe in scene five they play a different character,” Moody said. “We get to see the students more often on stage in this show and playing different types of characters, which has built their acting resume and how they adapt to different characters. It’s been a really fun challenge for all of them this year.”

As they are nearly halfway into their second full school year with the ongoing pandemic, Moody said the department has evolved to tackle any COVID related challenges head-on.

“More kids are able to stay at school. We’re not seeing as many quarantines this year, however we are still seeing some. That’s still a challenge that we’re facing, but we know how to deal with it a little bit better this year. We use a lot of rehearsals where students will have to video chat in and watch the rehearsal and say their lines to the computer screen,” Moody said. “It is what it is. This is our life now. We just keep going. The show must go on. Myself and the students have done a great job of moving past those challenges this year and seeing it more as this is the way it is and we just have to do what we have to do.” 

Moody said she hopes audiences who come to see their production will arrive excited to see something unlike they’ve ever seen before.

“Some of these stories are not super easy to follow at times, but they’re very artistically done,” Moody said. “I hope our (audiences) can enjoy just seeing something new and different on stage that’s not just telling a regular story. These are definitely more artistic and different and that’s what has made it so fun for us.”

The production features the talents of Kaitlyn Ayers, Molly Jones, Brooke Cox, Loreli Morrison, Ava McDonald, Jaxon Cottom, Cameron Morrison, Savannah Turner, Camryn Levingston, Simon Wolfe, Cameron Boss, Tatym Gettling, Gage Phipps, Caden Moszczenski, Angelica Maddelina, Chloe Cofer, Annika Arjes, Larkin Currier, Grace Clark, Kamden Musser, Stone Hose, Larkin Currier, Sean Osmond, Talya Tinoco, Kaitlyn Ayers and Owen Keene.

The Metamorphoses crew also includes Grant Moody, Darci Cott, Brooke Cox, Ella Morgan, Desiree Dehart, Lydia Woodmansee, Naomi Koscheski, Morgan Carlson, Ashton Connor, Wyatt Carlson, Alana Harmon, Mia Johnson, Tyler Freyermuth, Amber Parsons, Paden Higgins, Skyla Gahagan, Brynn Betcher, Cassandra Ellett, Paige Stanford, Hannah Hinderman, Kaleigh Degarmo, Rosa Wilson, Lexi Neihouse-Vogt, Allya Gandy, Zach Cottom, Charlie Brown, Naomi Koscheski, Emma Duvall, Valeria Ramos Vega, Cierra Walls, Jenna Bernhardi, Carmen Rys, Emma Parks, Rosie Cheek, Kylee Martin, Izsak Carlino, Vanessa Laney, Aliyah Hiebsch, Abigaile Lawson, Allyson Ardison, Kiilan Stephens, Marques Alexander, Maddie Wingfield, Kylee Kaneaster, Carrington Davis and Brittany Sotelo.

Showtimes for the production are at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 11, Friday, Nov. 12 and Saturday, Nov. 13. Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for students.

To reserve tickets call 417-334-6511, Ext: 51013 or email bhstheatre@branson.k12.mo.us. 

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