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The Green and Blackfriars traveled to Columbus, GA this past weekend to attend the Thespian Conference (ThesCon). They spent their time learning and engaging in more theatrical concepts, along with enjoying informational speakers, different workshops, challenges, and conference shows.
by Annabelle Adams and Lauren Brandt
The Green and Blackfriars traveled to Columbus, GA this past weekend to attend the Thespian Conference (ThesCon). They spent their time there learning and engaging in more theatrical concepts, along with enjoying informational speakers, different workshops, challenges, and conference shows.
According to the Georgia Thespians website, ThesCon is a three day theater conference that high school Thespians attend in order to engage in tons of theatrical experiences over the course of 3 days and 2 nights. Some of these experiences included different workshops and classes, such as a circus class, a belting class, a juggling class, and numerous dance classes like tap-dancing and hip-hop, to enhance their abilities.
The thespians of WGHS each got to attend conference shows that were put on and performed at ThesCon. The Georgia Thespians website states that these shows are high-quality performances and are done in one act.
Ava Brooks shared her input on how amazing and professional the shows were by saying, “They really stood out because of how much time they put into it and how much they [the actors] enjoy it.” Brooks recalls seeing her favorite musical, Newsies, and how surreal it felt to finally see the show in the front-row. “I will be talking about that for the rest of my life.”
Many of the members of Walnut Grove’s drama troupe came back from the trip very inspired and ready to put their all into their work. “It really inspired me to get more involved in theater, even though I already am very involved, and to just take the next step and just really focus on it,” recalled sophomore Shannon Hayes, who noted that she has been performing since she was in the fifth grade.
Other Troupe members came home feeling very motivated to just be themselves and open up more, such as James Alexander, who said, “ThesCon inspired me to be a little bit more open about what I do in drama and to not be afraid to take risks.” This inspiration correlates with the overall theme of ThesCon, which happened to be, “To live out loud and be who you are, unapologetically,” Samara McKnight revealed when asked about her take-away from the event.
With ThesCon being such a huge event, many Georgia high schools seemed to be in attendance. “It was cool seeing all the different types of schools, and the schools with bigger budgets and better performing arts programs that have been really built up, and just seeing them perform,” Matt McClung mentioned as he remembers his experience. “They put a lot of work into it and you could really tell,” McClung added while he reminisced on the “amazing” performances of the other schools.
Since over 5,000 people happened to be in attendance, there were numerous friendships to be made. “It was really fun just seeing so many theater kids. Downtown Columbus was just filled with like 5,000 people who are just like you and are people who share similar interests with you. You could just go up to them and spark conversation with them,” McClung also expressed as he recalled his favorite part of the whole experience.
After being around numerous other thespians, like herself, Hayden Ross commented that, “The confidence everyone had really stood out. Everywhere you went, everyone was just so confident.” Many attendees expressed that being around similar people connected the students with their peers and made the overall experience tremendous. James Alexander adds to this by saying, “I learned that each person is different and that over time, as people get more comfortable, they will do more stuff and become more confident.”
After attending ThesCon, The Green and Blackfriars plan to use their newly learned skills in their future performances, which include their upcoming spring shows, Mean Girls: The Musical and Metamorphoses.
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