The HW Project allows for student collaboration during quarantine

The HW Project allows for student collaboration during quarantine

The performing arts department created the first ever HW Project, a multi-media time capsule that will allow the Upper School community to reflect on the year and express themselves through storytelling. The project is student-centered, but the entire operation is co-directed by performing arts teacher Michele Spears and Broadway veteran Jennifer Leigh Warren.

In a school-wide email sent out Aug. 26, performing arts teacher Aaron Martin said no artistic experience is necessary to join the time capsule project. Martin said participants have the opportunity to answer a few questions, such as what has mattered most to them during quarantine, what people should know about them, what they would tell their future selves and how they would define their 2020 experience.

Meetings are being held after school and on Sundays in October, but students are also able to personalize their schedules depending on their extracurriculars. The final time capsule product is set to premiere via live-stream at the end of the calendar year.

Alon Moradi ’21, a performing arts student, said the project is still in the planning stages, though he has an idea of what it will eventually become.

“We just started the two-week workshop period, and this is helping us to brainstorm the stories we are choosing to tell and how we tell them,” Moradi said. “Eventually, we will be working on student-created multimedia material, and it will be made into a creative film at the end of the process.”

New to the school community, Warren said she is grateful for the opportunity to be a co-director and is impressed by the work the students are willing to put in.

“This is my first time here—[Spears] brought me in on this project, and I’m just blown away,” Warren said. “I’m so excited. I’m just happy that she made the phone call.”

Spears echoed the idea that the project is completely up to the student members, and she said the final product is still unknown to those involved. The project is all about them and is open to interpretation.

“The time capsule was used as a prompt to get their ideas going,” Spears said. “If we were going to create this, the final project would be a video, but it could have dance in it, it could have music, it could have fine art, it could have animation—it’s up to whatever talent they want to bring to express themselves.”

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