Tell us a bit about the background to your piece: how did you come up with the concept, what was your process in terms of bringing it from concept to final product?
Working in education is rather unique. It has a lot of fun perks but it can also be overwhelming at times. In order to help myself focussed on the positive side of it, I like to share funny stories about my day using the hashtag #MemoirsofaMiddleSchoolEA (keeping all staff and students anonymous of course). I have often thought it would be fun to compile these stories into a book or play of some sort, so when I heard that Gallery 7 was looking for original work from the community this seemed like a great opportunity to do so.
My husband works as a YouTuber/Gamer and has a green screen and all the editing software required to make everything look realistic. I felt that a Mockumentary would be a good genre to use as this way I could share some of my inner thoughts in between scenes involving students. I chose some of my favourite work stories and fictionalized those moments, creating a few different student characters. In order to keep things socially distant I decided I would play most of the roles myself, except for one scene where I was able to involve my cousins because we could film it outdoors. My husband was then able to take everything and edit it to look as if my characters were interacting with each other. Overall, it was a very fun project!
What do you hope audience members will experience or take away from your performance?
As I was putting together my script, staff and students alike were returning to school in the midst of a worldwide pandemic. There was a lot of feelings happening from excitement to confusion to fear and anxiety. Nobody really knew what to expect. I debated whether to add COVID to my video to make it current but decided against it. I hope that my project might help both adults and children to remember the fun (pre-COVID) side of the school experience.
Memoires of a Middle School EA will be screened on October 23 & 24 as part of Abby Theatre Fest: Stage to Screen Edition. For complete details and to purchase tickets, please visit HERE.