The theater arts’ spring production of “Mamma Mia” toward the end of the 2018-19 school year marked Ms. Eben’s fourth production at Morro Bay High School, and also her last. She completed her student teaching under Mr. Mammerella and found a new job teaching English at San Luis Obispo High School.
“Ms. Eben had this very different energy. She shared a lot of similar interests with the cast and was a really great person to be around.” Senior Marisa Dinsmoor was one of many cast members to connect with Ms. Eben. “We were all really sad to see her go because we had formed such a great bond with her. She was very supportive of us and told us she’s always there for us if we need anything. We supported her decision because we want her to be able to live and make money.”
Even though Ms. Eben’s departure was hard for her and the other cast members, Dinsmoor is still hopeful for the future of the program. “We have started meeting the new director and she seems like she has a similar energy coming in. Our first couple of rehearsals have been awesome! Ms. Davis is really fun to work with so far.”
Although she is new to the MBHS staff, this was not Ms. Davis’ first time at the school She was part of the theater arts program when she attended MBHS ten years ago. Coming in where she left off, she felt very comfortable with facilities. She is very excited about the updates to the sound and light equipment since she was last here and plans on utilizing these in both the fall play and spring musical.
Culture wise, she wasn’t quite as sure about what she had gotten herself into. She had worked with Ms. Wright extensively in her time here, and really enjoyed that particular style of directing. “If anything, I will be possibly reverting to the way Ms. Wright did things, if only because that’s how I was taught when I was here. But I also have amassed a good amount of experience outside of high school in the past ten years and I plan to bring some new and exciting things to the culture of Morro Bay High School Theater Department.
For the spring musical, Ms. Davis discloses that there will be a lot of dancing and lots of opportunities for ensemble dancers. “Unfortunately, the musical doesn’t necessarily lean towards utilizing a live band, though I am interested in using choice instruments for pieces within the show.”
Ms. Davis is also enthusiastic about how much the theater department has been able to grow in her absence. “Ten years ago, we did a musical about every four years… so that there was one musical for, you know, the four years that you attended MBHS you’d probably see one musical. And there are a lot of reasons for that, the biggest one being funding. Musicals are about ten times as expensive as a straight play so you have to go into it having the money to do it. Thankfully the theater program has grown quite a bit since I was here at it allows for a musical to be done about once a year. And I’m planning on utilizing the resources available to me.”