High school drama club performs live radio shows amid coronavirus pandemic

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (KABC) -- These talented teenagers at Los Osos High School in Rancho Cucamonga believe the show must go on.

After months inside and continued coronavirus cancellations, the high school's director of theater had a brilliant idea that would allow students to act and keep them physically distanced.

"I realized numerous years ago we did a night of radio plays. We did the original 'War of the Worlds' and 'Dracula' and it was a huge hit, people loved it," said the director of theater at Los Osos High School, Randy Shorts.

His students were thrilled.

"I was ecstatic. I have spent so much time following voice acting and voice performance," said one of the students.

The drama club meets on zoom, with dress rehearsals and performances outside.

The club uses sound effects, instruments and other aspects you'd see in the theater, but they're doing it all outside from individual booths.

"I love to be a part of it because it's so much fun and it's really different than a normal play," mentioned another member of the club.

The radio dramas are being played live every two weeks in comparison to past years where the students typically performed 3 to 4 shows per year.

"When you're watching it at 7 o'clock, you know this is happening right now and you're getting to see it in real time and there's something exciting about that," added Shorts.

Due to the outdoor environment, the shows can be a little unpredictable with weather and ambient noise factoring into the performances. But this isn't their first act and these students are rising to the challenge, rolling with the punches and making the most of a difficult situation.

"I think it's a great example to the rest of the school, everybody else -- let's stop saying it's too hard we can't do it. Let's start saying how can we do it differently, how can we do it better," said student Kelsey Shorts.

The Los Osos High School drama club's next radio play is next Friday, November 20th and can be watched on YouTube.
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