Showcase connects a wider variety of acts

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Leland Hanewall

Cameron Spann (left) and Jordan Biller (right) preform at this year's AFS Showcase. The event promotes the Shorewood AFS chapter.

This year’s showcase took place on November 15 and 16. The annual event raises money for Shorewood AFS and the drama department. This year, it featured 26 acts, and included over 90 students in the show and behind the scenes.

This year’s theme was “We Are One.” At first this seemed like an excuse for the show to be homogenous and single-faceted, but instead it brought together many different things from one school. There was a relatively diverse range of acts and talent. Many of the acts were still singing acts, but there was a larger variety of the types of songs as well as the instruments featured.

It was evident that the directors had selected larger groups in an effort to get as many people onstage as possible, with only four solo acts. It ended up being a nice range of sizes. The show was, however, extremely director-heavy, with directors in over half the acts. Jordan Biller, junior and student director, was in seven acts. John Ewing, senior and student director, was in six. 

Several acts performed original songs, which was a cool and interesting way to see other artistic abilities of the performers. The cover design of the program was done Maya Schmitz, junior, which showcased another talent.

Some acts were the same as previous years, such as Colin Kenney, senior, who unicycled and juggled, and recorder club, but the performers found ways to make the acts different and fresh. Kenney’s act included Principal Kenney riding a tricycle and then juggling with his son, which was a fun twist. Recorder club performed a new medley in their classic way, which delighted the audience as always. 

Trinity Higgens, senior, performed an impressive electric violin solo during “Long Train Runnin’” by the Doobie Brothers, in a band comprised of Trinity Higgins, Nimya Harris, Cameron Spann and Andrew Arndorfer.

Sophia Baumann, Molly Fox-Kincaid, Lily Martin and Clare Wizokskey put on an absorbing rendition of “Fly Me to the Moon” by Frank Sinatra, including an instrument not usually used, cello.

After the intermission, SHS students talked about their experiences abroad with AFS, and Haruka Takata and Natpreeyada “Mobile” Ratchanuphat spoke about their experiences in America so far. Both exchange students were in acts: Takata danced in a K-pop dance with Janiya Carter and Johnalyn Brzostokowski, and Mobile performed a Thai dance and song. 

The middle school act was four seventh graders who performed a dance to the song “Spooky Scary Skeletons” while wearing glow-in-the-dark skeleton costumes. The dance was short compared to the other acts, but the effervescent routine amused the audience. 

One thing that detracted from the show was the technical difficulties. There were several sound problems; some microphones were too loud, and others were very quiet or not even turned on. There were also a few prop misplacements and instances where props were not removed. 

This year’s showcase, though it had a few blips, connected a greater number of students, as well as a wider variety of talents than in previous years. All 26 acts came together to form one distinctive show.