The Making of a Movie - Alice in Wonderland

This year, the 4th and 5th graders performed in an Alice in Wonderland production like no other. Rather than performing onstage, our young talents performed in front of the green screen and made a movie!

Every year our 4th and 5th graders typically perform a highly polished musical onstage for the community in the Winter Play, but the pandemic ruled out any large gatherings. Our Performing Arts team wouldn't let COVID stop them in providing a performing experience for the students. Teachers Lindsay Bercovitch and Trevor Marcom, worked tirelessly to reconfigure each scene of the play to work in a green screen environment, planning for how the scenes could be edited together, and coordinating logistics in a way that ensured the cohorts would not mix and our students remained safe. 

Over a few weeks, students quickly learned their lines and dance moves and then patiently performed multiple takes of each scene on production day to ensure they captured what was needed. Without the usual parent volunteers, Lindsay personally ensured each student was wearing the proper costume, had the props they needed, and were wearing the masks that she had custom ordered from Etsy to perfectly match each costume. 

Dan Drasin, a long time producer for MTS, took video of each scene and then spent weeks editing the video and replacing the green screen with Alice in Wonderland backgrounds and fixing audio that was hard to hear through masks. 

Prior to the movie release, 4th and 5th graders had the opportunity to walk the red carpet before their Preview Party – the first time they saw the video in its entirety. On the day of the movie release, kindergarten students presented roses to the 4th and 5th graders in congratulations. Then MTS students enjoyed an "all-school" viewing, separately watching the video during their homeroom classrooms with each of their cohorts. Echoing in the halls could be heard comments like "My Buddy Bear is a MOVIE STAR!" and "Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum were awesome!"

The entire production was a massive undertaking, and the results were truly phenomenal. A huge congratulations to our 4th and 5th grade students and to the Performing Arts Department. Outstanding!

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