Aren’t We A Little Old For This?

Have you ever cringed at immature behavior, or rolled your eyes at an immature joke? If not, you’re probably the one issuing the immaturity. For actors and actresses, immaturity is something they have to deal with at every performance. While they deliver a perfected monologue, they have to ignore the members of the audience who are giggling at their costume or whispering about what’s going on in the background. For actors at George Ranch High School, dealing with an immature audience shouldn’t be a problem they have to face.

Since we were in elementary school, we’ve been told how to act during a performance. Being quiet and sitting still are just a couple of the basic etiquette rules. However, last week when the members of the One Act Play competition performed their scene at a buyout, there were some problems in the audience that need to be noted. For such an amazing and heartfelt performance, they deserved a better audience. Luckily, the actors at our school are professionals and know how to handle the stress of an audience.

Sophomore Sean Hardin who played Chris in the One Act performance said, “It’s hard to ignore it. It can be a distraction, but you just have to stay in the moment and pretend you don’t hear it.”

Possibly the hardest type of play to perform in front of audiences are the dramas, like the one the theatre students performed called “All My Sons.” Because they are usually not very humorous, it calls for a more mature audience to react to the serious tones of the scenes. When the audience decides to act immaturely, it disrupts the whole mood of the play.

“It really just annoys me more than anything but I bet it’s even worse for the actors,” said junior stage manager, Brenna Carlisle.

Buyouts are one of George Ranch’s top fundraisers, and they are also great opportunities for performers to share what they’ve worked on. Plus, students get a chance to see some of the outstanding art that their peers have worked hard on. For the actors, it is not only an annoyance, but it also affects their acting ability.

“It honestly throws me off my game a little bit,” said sophomore Princess Johnson, who played Ann in “All My Sons”. “Prior to buyouts we spend so much time getting into character and when someone throws you off it’s so hard to get back into it.”

Theatre teacher, Ms. Walters agrees, stating that the actors and actresses need a mature audience in order to get into their character.

“Audience members shouldn’t speak during performances or respond to events onstage vocally.  It is very hard for actors to focus when the audience is being distracting,” said Ms. Walters.

Despite the number of students who don’t know how to act properly at performances, there are still a big group of people who do know what is appropriate for the theatre. These students, like many of the actors, are tired of the behavior exhibited at buyouts. They simply want to enjoy the show without the disturbance of inappropriate behavior.

Sophomore Viviane Nguyen said, “Because I have attended all of the buyouts, I have come to the conclusion that the ruckus develops from the same genre of people, the people that only attend primarily just to get out of being in advisory.”

However, buyouts are open to everyone, despite the reasoning behind attendance, and manners should not only be expected from those who want to be there. Even the students who only buy a ticket to get out of advisory should have to follow the same etiquette guidelines.

So next time you attend a performance, be respectful. The students in arts programs work too hard to have to put up with a bad audience. So if you witness inappropriate behavior, do something about it.