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Legacy Traditional School performs play for first time since pandemic

The show must go on
Oliver! Jr. play preparation
Posted at 10:29 PM, Mar 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-12 12:35:10-05

HENDERSON (KTNV) — Well after the school day would have normally ended at Legacy Traditional School in Henderson, Music Instructor Michael Erickson delicately applied a fake mustache and beard to one of his students, Mariah Archuleta, while surrounded by dozens of other students running around the room, moving set pieces, and getting into costume for the first play they've been able to put on since the coronavirus pandemic began.

Archuleta described the pre-show controlled chaos well. "It's mostly comprised of panicking and running around," she said.

The elementary and middle school students were preparing for their rendition of "Oliver! Jr." with the excitement of kids who haven't been able to do what they love in months — because they haven't.

"It was rough," Erickson said, "It was very rough."

The teacher said the pandemic became a dark time for many of his students.

"We couldn't put a production on," Archuleta said. "There's still a virus going around! So it took a piece of me, and it said 'wait'"

Erikson said the kids have worked incredibly hard to get to showtime by rehearsing three days a week since September, with some Saturdays thrown in and maybe a few extra hours tossed in toward the end.

"I may have gone a couple hours over our final rehearsal," Erickson said as he and nearby students laughed, "Possibly had a couple of emails from parents saying where's my kid."

But the payoff, he said, has been worth it as the students emerge from a dark couple of years to spread joy on stage.

"I like to, as I'm looking at these kids, I like to guide these kids towards celebrating positivity, celebrating ensemble, and life," he said.

"Oliver! Jr." has two more shows at 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. on Saturday at Legacy Traditional School in Henderson.