The show goes on -- outdoors -- for St. Viator's fall play

  • St. Viator High School students are performing their fall play in the school parking lot. The cast, crew and faculty members were putting on the finishing touches during a dress rehearsal Wednesday night.

      St. Viator High School students are performing their fall play in the school parking lot. The cast, crew and faculty members were putting on the finishing touches during a dress rehearsal Wednesday night. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • St. Viator High School's south parking lot has been transformed into a makeshift outdoor theater for the Arlington Heights school's fall play. Sold-out performances for "Girls in the Boat" will be held through Sunday night.

      St. Viator High School's south parking lot has been transformed into a makeshift outdoor theater for the Arlington Heights school's fall play. Sold-out performances for "Girls in the Boat" will be held through Sunday night. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Two soccer field bleachers serve as the outdoor set for St. Viator High School's fall play, being held this weekend in the Arlington Heights school's parking lot.

      Two soccer field bleachers serve as the outdoor set for St. Viator High School's fall play, being held this weekend in the Arlington Heights school's parking lot. John Starks | Staff Photographer

 
 
Updated 10/2/2020 10:19 AM

Reciting their lines under the stars and through face masks, St. Viator High School's thespians have taken their annual fall play outdoors, proving the adage that the show must go on.

The 11-member cast and three understudies are performing in what's become a makeshift theater in the school's south parking lot, where nightly sold-out shows were scheduled Thursday through Sunday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Some 50 seats are set up in the parking lot -- all spaced six feet apart -- and temperatures of audience members are taken upon arrival.

Attendees are asked to wear face masks, like the performers. They're also encouraged to bring blankets to sit on or bundle up in, as lower fall temperatures have set in.

Megan Gray, the school's new theater teacher, said the students have been rehearsing all along with their masks on, working on their projection so everyone can hear.

"They just want opportunities. They want to be able to do things that feel normal. And this is what would be normal for these students," Gray said on the school's "A Lion for Life" podcast. "So we're trying to make that happen any way possible, and they're being flexible as well."

The fall play, "Girls in the Boat" by Alice Austen, chronicles the history of women's rowing in America, from the Yale women's rowing team and their fight for Title IX rights in the 1970s to the inclusion of women's rowing in the Olympics.

The outdoor set is all of two bleachers, borrowed from the school soccer field, on which a rowing mechanism is placed.

Because of the limited capacity, the 7 p.m. Sunday performance will be livestreamed on the high school's Facebook page at facebook.com/saintviatorhighschool.

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