Ridgefield High School theatre students practice on Zoom for their live-streaming production of “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” next month.


Drama students at Ridgefield High School are taking the saying “the show must go on” to the next level this year. 

On Dec. 12 and 13, theatre students at the high school will be producing “It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” completely online with a livestream of the performance available to the public. 

The radio play is an adaptation of the classic holiday movie, “It’s a Wonderful Life,” in which George Bailey wishes he had never been born and his guardian angel helps him look at all the lives he has impacted. 

Author Joe Landry restages the Christmas story with the excitement of a live 1940s radio broadcast. 

“The story is so wonderful and hopeful — something we can all use right about now,” Ridgefield High School Drama Teacher Kaitlyn Etter said in a news release. 

Transitioning from a stage production to an online production has been challenging for Etter and the drama students, including Zoom practices and learning the intricacies of livestreaming technology. 

“The students are excited about overcoming the challenges and getting creative!  The production is taking a lot of inventiveness, initiative, and enthusiasm on the part of our students and department,” Etter said. “One step at a time, but one of my favorite things about theatre is how it teaches us to adapt and think creatively.”  

The production will feature 21 students in the cast of actors including lead actors Peter Schafer, Cameron McGravey, Sophia Miller, Avari Harrison, Anna Vande Krol, Dallin Casper and Elle Lutz. Many of them will be playing multiple characters in the show.

Behind the scenes, 22 students will ensure the production runs smoothly. The technical crew includes lead crew members Kaitlyn St. John, Jay Stengele, Ani Gallman, Donnie St. John, LeeAnne Krause and Caige Sothern. 

Art and history teacher Aziza Mansuri is also assisting with the show. 

The crew will help solve the challenges involved in taking the production online and creating a radio-style atmosphere. 

The crew will have to create original Foley Effects (the sound effects that bring a radio production to life such as footsteps and doors) in real time with the production. 

More information such as the exact time of streaming will be available on the Ridgefield High School social media accounts and website along with online at spudderactivities.weebly.com/theatre.html


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