In light of the global pandemic professional sports were forced to improvise. They were forced to come up with new systems to make their games still possible. And the National Basketball Association decided their best course of action would be to bubble all 322 of the players in the playoffs (and a number of support staff that I was unable to find) in Disney Resort Hotels in Orlando Florida.
Now you may be asking “Well Ian what does this possibly have to do with the production of a high school musical?” And to that I’d tell you three words. Large. Unoccupied. School-Building-With-a-Theatre-in-it. My idea, we bubble the entirety of the cast and crew for our spring show in the currently empty Nathan Hale High School, and for the duration of the rehearsal and performing process we live, sleep, and eat there.
On the surface it might not seem very cost effective but consider this. In 2015, 283 students qualified for free lunch (According to SPS), A 2020 FDA analysis found that the highest quality school lunches on average cost 3.90 to produce. That’s a whopping $1103.7 a day. Giving the entire 27 person cast and crew 3 meals a day costs $315, A mere fraction of the amount. This means that in doing this Seattle Schools is actually spending Significantly less than they would on a normal day. As far as things like utilities, we’d use significantly less water, less power, and generally just less of everything. Now I’m not an accountant, and so I’m sure there are many factors I’m missing but from what I have been able to calculate this is not the significant financial burden that it would initially seem.
And what of the benefits for the actors? The show would be unmatched by its peers. While every other high school was struggling to figure out how to make a show online, we could be in person, producing a veritable masterpiece. It would give Nathan Hale Theatre an Unparalleled level of clout, and our names would go down in history as the only high school theatre to safely produce a regular show in person. The show would be recorded with high quality equipment using all the money we saved the school and would be released just as any other recorded stage production.
But unfortunately, it was never meant to be. My idea was quietly rejected amid pressure from theatre executives, and the show was destined to be produced from our homes. It’s going to be a good show though, the actors are still the same talented folks you’d see on the stage, the same beautiful voices and personalities. I’m excited for it, and I think you’ll all enjoy it too. And as I gaze out from your screens, I hope you know that I hope next year I can see you gazing back.