Well, maybe they haven’t heard the tears, but they have definitely heard you belt as high as you can at 9 am! A musical theatre student’s life is always challenging, but as we begin zooming back into the studios we look at how an online musical theatre student’s life presents different challenges.
Trying to take a dance class in your kitchen may lead to a stubbed toe and broken cupboards. What was supposed to be a solo performance turns into a duet because your dog may end up barking along in the background. I know it sounds funny, but it gets stressful! ICMT student Iris says that one of the hardest parts is the lack of socialisation. “Working by myself, cooking by myself, motivating myself, it gets tricky.” “Sometimes it feels impossible, but you just have to breathe,” says student Charlie.
It’s not ALL bad! Being on the computer may be eye damaging, says Iris, but it has offered some different experiences that students may not have had had it not been for the lockdown. Students we spoke to mentioned how lucky they all felt that the ICMT had given them new opportunities throughout their online experience. They shared that external playwrights, directors, and performers have joined online classes and introduced them to new industry perspectives. These opportunities have kept everyone’s spirits high.
While online courses were necessary, everyone we spoke to agreed that it is impossible to learn the craft of musical theatre without being in person. Musical theatre is a living and breathing art form that cannot be taught over a computer screen forever. Students shared that musical theatre is built from connections and energies in a room that you get from each other. Student Eleonora mentions the importance of ensemble and how it’s impossible to hone in on ensemble skills while you’re alone. “Musical theatre is simply not a solo art form,” says Charlie. Working as an ensemble and sharing that sense of community is demanding over a computer screen.
So, what is everyone most looking forward to when they get to be back in the building? Unanimously, they are most excited to connect and create art together again. Eleonora says she looks forward to the authentic magic of musical theatre that brings a twinkle to her eye. Iris explained, “Life is unpredictable; we shouldn’t wait for things to happen; we have to make them happen, even if it’s a slow process!” Despite the challenges remote learning has presented, our students will come out of this stronger than ever, and everyone here at the ICMT cannot wait to be back in the studios with them again!
Are you still learning online? Check out our tips here!