DeLand High School’s Hill Street Theatre is still up and running for another year! Although things are far from what we are used to, we are so happy to be back in school and making the best of all the changes we are experiencing. 

Due to our unwelcome COVID-19 guest, we decided not to do a regular fall show. Because some of our students are face-to-face and others join us online, rehearsing a full production was too difficult to navigate. 

Instead, at 7 p.m. Wednesday-Friday, Oct. 21-23, we will present our Kaleidoscope Show, along with our district one-act production of The Masque of Beauty and the Beast by Michael Brill, to family, friends and the general public. 

The performance will take place in our beautiful, large auditorium. Tickets are available at the door and cost $5. 

Every November, the students in the theater program participate in the Florida State Thespian District Festival. Under normal circumstances, about 1,200 theater students from three counties make up our District Three Festival. This year, our festival will be entirely virtual, with students recording their pieces and uploading them for adjudication. 

Students from Volusia, Seminole and Flagler counties compete in their individual events, which include performances in every aspect of theater, from acting to musicals and student-directed scenes to playwriting, for adjudication by Central Florida theater teachers and professionals in the Orlando entertainment industry. 

It has been a Hill Street Theatre/Thespian tradition to perform a Kaleidoscope Show, which showcases every performance we take to competition, including our one-acts, the night before we compete. 

This year, we have three nights to show off what the DHS thespians are capable of on stage. We will also have our technical pieces on display around the auditorium for the audience to see. 

This year, we have 42 student-performers and 36 individual performances! We will be performing selections from Legally Blond, The Odd Couple (both the male and female versions), Falsettos, Barefoot in the Park, The Book of Mormon, Greater Tuna, The Children’s Hour, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, DMV Tyrant and several more. 

We are also excited about our one-act The Masque of Beauty and the Beast. This is not the Disney version of the tale! Some of the elements of this unique production are the use of masks, poetry and music to enhance the already gorgeous story. Due to the fact that we must all wear masks, this play suited our purposes perfectly! 

We ask that all audience members wear a mask during the show. The auditorium is big enough to ensure safe social distancing, so everyone can enjoy the show without worrying about making physical contact. 

Come support these amazingly talented young performers. You have already seen many of them in Athens and Shoestring productions. Now you can see them under different lights, doing what they love to do best! See you at the theater! 

— Jenny Sejansky is director of the theater-arts program at DeLand High School.