The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

The Student News Site of Washington International School

International Dateline

Upper Schoolers Set to Make a Splash in “Metamorphoses”

The unique set design for the school play “Metamorphoses” includes a pool. The pool is central to the production as several actors interact with it. (Nicolas Greamo/International Dateline)

The WIS Upper School play this year, “Metamorphoses,” will present a unique new set element; the set will include a large pool for the first time. 

Playwright Mary Zimmerman’s show is an adaptation of “Metamorphoses,” the magnum opus of the Roman poet, Ovid. It’s based on both Greek and Roman mythology and centers around various different elements. 

Upper School Theatre Arts Teacher and Play Director Kerri Rambow is particularly excited about the pool. This pool is essential to the plot as it represents water, one of the four key elements within the play. The show requires a physical representation of “water, land, light, and sky,” Rambow said.

Water is involved in many of the short stories and vignettes which appear in the show, such as the Greek myth of King Midas. A quarter of the cast gets fully submerged throughout the show, according to Ian LeValley, the main creator of the pool. 

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LeValley described that the pool is built on an angled ramp creating a shallow and deep end to accommodate the cast members The angle will help minimize certain students from getting completely submerged in the water. He planned the shallow end to be one foot and around a foot and a half in the deep end. 

Besides these basic plans, many additional logistics accompany the pool. 

The pool needs to stay clean during rehearsal and for the performance nights. “We’ll have an external filtration system that gets placed into the pool,” Rambow said. 

The costumes for the play will enable students to dry off backstage and prepare for their next scene faster and more efficiently. “Everybody will have a one piece bathing suit underneath, and then there are pieces that go on top of that. Backstage, we will have heaters and fans and towels,” LeValley said. 

In addition, Mark Perkins, Audio-Visual (A/V) Systems Coordinator, explained that the lights will have to be installed after the pool is constructed. Perkins foresees that the tech crew will have to use an extension ladder to hang them. This ladder comes with a “significant risk of falling,” Perkins said. Ultimately, the tech crew was able to use the Genie instead of the ladder. 

Due to the construction of the pool, set construction will be more logistically complicated than past sets. “[This is] probably the most ambitious set we’ve ever done,” LeValley said.

Nonetheless, the pool is expected to enhance the performance. “The pool will add a uniqueness to the play and take it to the next level,” Perkins said.

By Maia Nehme

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