Wednesday night was the first performance of the school production, ‘Me & My Girl.’ Being a member of the cast, I can say in a completely unbiased manner that the first showing was a raging success, despite some very unexpected occurrences.
Picture this: the performance is running smoothly along (in contrast to a *rough* dress rehearsal, but let’s skim over that), and we’re only one scene away from the big finale. The cast is relieved and happy and ready to end the show with a bang, when suddenly, with only 4 minutes to go, the fire alarm goes off.
Four minutes to go, and the fire alarm goes off.
Everyone freezes and a baffling silence ensues. Being the quick-thinking leads that they are, Seamus and Phoebe diffuse the confusion with deft ease; everyone piles out of the assembly hall, important characters that are yet to be “revealed” being smothered in scarves to shield them from prying eyes, the cast shuddering from the cold in their costumes. It’s all a bit awkward. Thankfully, Seamus, able to embody the charming cockney in any situation, stands on the dias and once again takes up the character of Bill. He performs an acapella rendition of ‘Leaning on a Lamppost’ – objectively the best song of the show – to successfully entertain everyone whilst the crew fret trying to turn the alarm off.
So far, prime suspect: the smoke machine, brought to our attention at the interval with a declaration of ‘cor, it’s a bit smokey in ‘ere, innit?’. However, Ms Archard walks out onto the dias and announces that the fire alarm was caused by the kitchens, of all places, and that we can safely return in and complete the final 4 minutes of the performance.
The rest of the show goes as planned, with more adrenaline-fuelled singing and six 15-second adrenaline-fuelled costume changes; the Howe girls even getting up to join in with the dancing at the end (try and beat that, Nelson).