By Mikaela STONE
This Halloween, the sounds of screams and ghostly children’s laughter will rise from the Crescenta Valley High School theater. Members of the ETLP classes (Entertainment, Technology and Live Production) are hard at work building a haunted maze that will be set up on the theater’s stage.
This year’s theme is “Abandoned Toy Store” and features rooms such as the doll room and the stuffed animal room. Two levels of horror, low scare and standard, will be available by request for guests 9 years and older. Much of the planning has come from the class seniors under the watchful eyes of ETLP teachers Odina Dominguez and Michael Evans.
Lights, sound, costumes and props are key to setting a spooky scene and are the responsibility of students who are spreading their wings beyond just having plays. The class’s honors students will be covering all scaring, technical and front-of-house duties, while all classes have been contributing to the maze’s set up.
On Tuesday, Oct. 17, the class was busy after school building door frames for hauntees. With the absence of the fondly remembered high school shop classes that taught home repair and management it fell to ETLP to teach safety, tool use and basic building skills. One student, Sophia Lavanchy, was hard at work putting “faces” on the flat setpieces that will serve as walls for the maze.
Faces are thin wooden sheets that cover the wooden scaffolding, or “fishbones,” of the flat. The process has been expedited by building corner pieces first so the flats merely need to be secured. The tools used have been funded in part by Career Technical Education, which helps students learn and utilize skills necessary for a trade. The costs of costumes, makeup and other pieces of the maze will be subsidized by the price of an entry ticket.
However, the scares manufactured in the class’s woodshop will not be the only frightening presence in the MacDonald Auditorium on Oct. 30 and Oct. 31. Rumor has it that paranormal happenings are common behind the scenes as well. The theater ghost, dubbed Casper by the stage crew and Kevin by the student actors, is a common sighting for Evans, who confirms that during the high school’s most recent production there were “flickering lights and disrupted sound cues.” Perhaps this specter will pay a visit to the maze? The only way to find out will be to attend Stage Fright at Crescenta Valley High School which runs in the MacDonald Auditorium in the 4400 block of Ramsdell Avenue on Monday, Oct. 30 and Tuesday, Oct. 31 from 12:17 to 12:47 during lunch and also from 3:45 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10. Note that fog, strobe lights, haze and loud sounds will be in use.