No More Virtual: MSA Programs Prefer the Live Performances


Photo courtesy of Marguerite Marley

Marguerite Marley, Reporter

The COVID-19 pandemic has inordinately changed Novato High School. MSA (Marin School of the Arts) has been especially impacted by scheduling changes, performance postponements, and venue planning. Many of the programs have been forced to make changes. 

Unfortunately, with the Omicron variant on the rise, many MSA programs have been forced to postpone live events. MSA theater’s latest production of Young Frankenstein was postponed until March 4th and several festivals they attend throughout the year including Lenaea High School Theater Festival have been moved into the virtual space.

According to junior Zoe Edwards, “Over Zoom school, we just had to work with cameras in our house.” Zoe mentioned that “[In person shows] creates a really strong energy that is really hard to live without, especially when doing a comedy show or a musical.”

Omicron has also highly affected the Vocal Music program. Senior Liz Peterson said, “There have been times when we have only had 8 people in our class of 20, and it just makes me really nervous to be singing indoors.” 

This semester many of the MSA programs were able to perform concerts in person. MSA dance was able to host their annual Big Band Fundraiser, and the music programs were able to host many in-person concerts  Matt Verplaetse, the rock/ jazz band director said “It’s great to be back in school and making music with everyone again.. We were really lucky to have a concert in our new center for the arts, which is awesome.”

Verplaetse knows all about the Omicron impact.

“Already this semester, we’ve been seeing things get canceled again. It’s a battle for us because performing out at festivals and doing a lot of concerts have always been a big part of our music programs,” Verplaetse said. 

A lot of the MSA programs have felt the shock of the pandemic and have been forced to adapt to a new normal, but with the Omicron surge rising throughout the country these programs will continue to adapt.