“Once Upon a December”: Vista Drama’s “Night of Scenes and Songs” Is a Success

Hana Shaik, Editor-in-Chief

On December 1, Vista Drama presented their fourth annual “Night of Scenes and Songs,” with this year’s theme “Once Upon a December.” “Once Upon a December” was a three-hour show with student performances of scenes, songs, and monologues. The night raised money for Vista Drama.

The masters of ceremony of the night were junior Jason Lim and senior Joshua Lovell. As they hosted the evening, Vista Drama teacher Christina Rae’s Drama 1 students served food to the audience.

Accompanied by pianist Samuel Cline, the tone of the performances ranged from comical to serious. On the more comical side, some that seemed to evoke the most laughter from the audience included “My First Lockdown,” a scene performed by Kelly Stephen and Madelyn Harding; “Over the Moon,” a monologue from the musical Rent performed by Sydney Harrell; and “Nice Tie,” a monologue performed by Madelyn Harding.

“My First Lockdown” is about two frenemies, Grace (Harding) and Tess (Stephen), trapped in a closet during a lockdown at their school as a shooter had entered the premises. The duo proceed to argue comically about a variety of topics including the school play. In the middle of their argument, Grace realizes that she really has to pee. She proceeds to cry about how she’s “going to die in a janitor’s closet in a puddle of [her own] pee.” Then, she pees. After a brief conversation, Tess says “Hey Grace, hand me the mop,” implying that the pee has spread all over the floor.   

In “Over the Moon,” a girl (Harrell) discusses a vividly strange dream she had earlier. In her dream, the girl is in a desert called Cyberland. It’s very hot and she doesn’t have any water. She feels very thirsty and then she sees a cow and asks the cow if she can drink some of her milk. The cow Elsie says she can’t give the girl any milk as she isn’t allowed to produce milk, stating in Cyberland they “only drink Diet Coke.” The cow proceeds to tell the girl that Cyberland is a dystopian universe where the only way to escape is to jump “over the moon.” In short, the dream is a dystopian take on the classic nursery rhyme “Hey Diddle Diddle.”    

In “Nice Tie,” a woman (Harding) at a bar is offered a drink by a man. The woman then proceeds to discuss how this drink could lead to much more and that may not be very good for either party. Thus, she doesn’t take the drink and adds “Nice tie, though” as she walks away.       

On the more serious side of the performances, there were “You Should Have Listened,” an original monologue written and performed by Ashley Rose; “The Cancer Monologue,” performed by Madisyn Chapman; and “Richard Fisher’s Funeral,” a monologue performed by Hannah Karsting. “You Should Have Listened” featured a girl (Rose) having an argument with someone who neglected her even when she desperately needed their help.

In “The Cancer Monologue,” a cancer patient (Chapman) discusses how she thinks she should give up on life as the doctors won’t even reassure her that she will live and her family won’t come to see her anymore.

In “Richard Fisher’s Funeral,” a girl (Karsting) at a funeral discusses the emotional abuse she and her brother Ricky had to face from their father Richard Fisher during their childhoods.

The night culminated in a memorable performance of “Seasons of Love” from Rent performed by Shreya Acharya, Taegan Beeson, Madisyn Chapman, Autumn Conklin, Nina Cruz, Camille Delizo, Madi Feenstra, Emilie Kim, Jason Lim, Joshua Lovell, Mira Malone, Isabelle Millard, Elliott Montbriand, Bella Nguyen, Ellie Nguyen, Mina Nur Basmaci, Rosie Nunn, Lance Padilla, Zoe Parkins, Caitlin Snyder, Kelly Stephen, and Asiana Weddington. The variety of the voices of Vista’s performers created a beautiful harmony.

According to Rae, the night was a success. “We were sold out and had a great crowd. The students seemed to really have a great time,” said Rae.

The final numbers for how much money was raised for Vista Drama during the fundraiser are unknown at the time of publishing. “We haven’t received final numbers yet, but our goal was $2,000,” said Rae. While Vista Drama does not know how much money they raised, it is safe to assume that they reached their goal as the show was sold out and many of the items, that were auctioned off during the silent auction which took place during the show, were bought by various members of the audience.

Whether Vista Drama reached their goal or not, the school can expect to see many exciting productions from Vista Drama in the future.