Theatre Students Immerse in World War I Era

Middle School Advanced Theatre students gained a deeper understanding of World War I through a production of Over Here: A Musical Pastiche on WWI on May 22-23. The play, written by theatre faculty Laura Ferri, depicts the pivotal events of the times, including pro-war and anti-war debates, the fight for Women's Suffrage, the rise of Labor in the garment and theatre industries, and the Influenza pandemic.

Laura chose the play production to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the end of WWI. As preparation for the play, students researched events of the early 1900s. In addition, Laura engaged the students in simulated activities that exposed them to the pains of unfair labor practices.

"This experience is very important," explains Laura. "You can try to empathize with what people are going through, but until you experience it yourself in some way, you won't truly understand."

Laura originally wrote Over Here for a Northwest performance in 2008. She expanded on the play for this year's performance after traveling to New York City and visiting the Tenement Museum.