While Midsummer Night's Dream was written more than 400 years ago, the seemingly timeless tale offered plenty of inspiration to Stephenville High School students who recently transformed William Shakespeare's classic.
Technical theatre design students were charged with taking the play to a different time or place by creating a new set, costumes, marketing and makeup for the production.
And the students accepted the challenge with true City of Champions style as the school's design team and three individuals advanced to state where they will compete against other schools in Austin on May 23.
A team of seniors, including Mary Meiron, who took on makeup design; Laura Tanter, tackling set design, Morgan Gilliand taking charge of marketing design; and Emily Trinque, heading up costume design, showed they had what it takes to work together to transform every aspect of the play.
"The team based their version of this classic on an old style circus," said theatre teacher Mindy Pope.
The students said they are proud of their efforts.
“We all put countless hours into this project and are very excited to have this great honor bestowed on us,” Tanter said.
For at least one of the team members, the third time's a charm.
"I’ve done the contest for the last three years, and this is the first time I qualified to go to state," Gilliland said. "I’m incredibly excited to go with my best friends which are also my teammates!”
Another said a new category allowed her to put her true talents to work.
“This is the first year they offered makeup and hair design, and it was wonderful to design for an area of theatre I have a passion for and even better advancing to state,” Meiron said.
Meanwhile, senior Laura Thomas and junior Tylan Jones, both individual competitors, advanced in set design. Thomas' set is dollhouse-inspired while Jones went with a pirate theme.
To create their set designs, students used "Google SketchUp," according to Pope, who said the competitors are required to submit a three dimensional coloring rendering, floor plan, justification paper and a collage showing what inspired their choices.
“It was challenging to learn how to use the Google SketchUp program, but I’m really glad I learned how to do it because it’s really rewarding to get such a big honor like advancing to state on my first try," Thomas said.
Mickala Deleeuw advanced in costume design with her Native American inspired creations.
When submitting costume designs, Pope said students created three designs - a male, female and costume of their choice.
The class created designs In November and local judges selected which entries should be submitted to UIL.
"After the local judges selected the entries, the students modified and improved their designs in January based on their criticism," Pope said.
The perfected projects were mailed to UIL judges in Austin who selected state finalists.
"This competition is unique in that it goes straight to state and 1A-5A schools compete together," Pope explained, adding the entries will be displayed at the UIL one-act play competition in May where students will hear judges' critiques and answer questions about their designs.
"I’m so proud of these state finalists," Pope said. "They are driven and so creative. Their hard work has really paid off, and I can’t wait to see them represent their designs at state."