AFS Showcase returns after last year’s virtual performance

The high school talent show, AFS Showcase, took place in-person on November 12 and 13 for the first time since the pandemic. The show consists of student acts, and all proceeds go to American Field Services, a culture exchange program in which students travel to and study in foreign countries.

Many students were involved in the production of showcase, not just performers.

“There’s always student directors of showcase every year, composed of juniors and seniors. This year we [had] six,” said Clara McElfresh, senior and co-director. “The student directors work on coordinating the show, we pick a theme, we watch the auditions, we coordinate all the rehearsals, we give our input on each act and we also participate in acts ourselves.”

Showcase members hold rehearsals at SHS. As the performance draws nearer, acts are steadily improving.

“We spread out in the auditorium or the studio theater and people bring in their own instruments [or equipment],” McElfresh said. “We have about 30 minute blocks of time for each rehearsal. [The acts] are getting pretty show ready, and it’s exciting to see the progress they’ve made.”

I think it’s a really great creative outlet for students to be able to express themselves,

— Clara McElfresh, senior and co-director

Getting accustomed to a traditional theatrical work schedule proved to be a hardship for some new performers. 

“[It] can be challenging because we have people who are from the world of theater among our directors. We have musicians, we have dance acts, we even have a comedy act this year,” said Adam Sheaffer, SHS drama director.

One highlight of Showcase for SHS students is getting to see the hidden talents of their classmates.

“You go to school with these people and you might only see one particular side of them in class, but then you find out they’re actually a great singer, they can play the bass or they’re a stand up comedian,” McElfresh said. “I think it’s a really great creative outlet for students to be able to express themselves.”