Branching Out

Branching Out

Ask anyone, and they will tell you I love Hockaday. My senior ring is my most prized possession, my uniform is my favorite outfit and the centennial luncheon was my favorite day of 2014. I am a die-hard daisy. And so, as my hocka-days grow to an end, it has become my mission to expe­rience as much of this wonderful place as possible.

Fine Arts has never been my forte (obvi­ously — I chose Four­cast over choir or studio art). Yet, it has been a vital part of so many people’s time here. So when I found out that this year’s mu­sical was going to be the “Sound of Music” (only the best movie ever), I made the impromp­tu decision to sign up for costume crew.

GRAPHIC BY MANISHA RATAKONDA
GRAPHIC BY MANISHA RATAKONDA

I found myself in a part of the school I had never been to before, let alone knew existed: the set room behind the stage. That first day was interesting to say the least. Walking in, I was surrounded by people who I had seen these last four years but still had never really spoken to. This was their world, and I was the new kid. It was an adjustment, but it soon became my favorite part of the day. From 4 to 6 p.m. every school day, we sewed, tai­lored, decorated and painted.

We were in full throttle. Within days, I started to see the world of the “Sound of Music” appear before my eyes, from the painted mountains to the Captain’s Mansion.

Never had I fully realized that the set crew actually takes a piece of wood, cuts it and hammers it together, to make every single piece of furniture for the stage. We were respon­sible for the show.

And then came produc­tion week. The grumbles I had heard about this week over my three years in high school all proved to be true. We ran the show a to­tal of seven times in seven days, and I began to long for the stress-free weeks of the Junior Re­search Paper or college essays. Despite the sleep deprivation, I was having the best time, applying makeup and racing through quick changes.

So when the final curtain closed on our Sunday perfor­mance, I didn’t want it to end. The musical had become one of my favorite parts of senior year, and I was so immensely proud of the show we had made from scratch.

I wish I had more years of costume crew to look for­ward to. Freshman year, I had told myself to pick “a thing” and make it mine, and obviously I’ve loved every sec­ond of doing com­munity service, my chosen thing, but I thought that meant I couldn’t do any­thing else — a false no­tion I think we have all fallen guilty to.

Since I never consid­ered myself an artsy per­son, produc­tion was not even on my ra­dar. I had lim­ited myself by defining my role here. Hockaday is overflowing with fun clubs and ac­tivities to try, and I urge everyone to take advantage. There won’t be many more opportunities in life where you can just decide to be part of a 60 cast member musical just for fun. My sug­gestion: don’t label yourself, either as an athlete, academic or whatever it may be. Try everything that sounds fun to you. You don’t want to leave high school with any regrets.

Avita Anand, Business Manager