TJC Theatre adapts to COVID-19
Photos by Jessica King
Tyler Junior College’s performing arts programs, like all programs and classes, are having to think outside the box. According to TJC’s COVID-19 Fall 2020 Plan, all students and faculty will need to wear a face covering to all functions, including performing arts, and keep a safe distance from others while attending these events.
Bryce McWilliams, the director of theatre facilities at TJC, gave some updated information about how he intends to keep students and faculty safe, while keeping them entertained.
Theatre classes in the upcoming semester will be rearranged to comply with the COVID-19 procedures, McWilliams reports, with the “actual theatre being used as a classroom.”
He says the rearrangement of theatre courses into new spaces will definitely present interesting challenges for how to operate safely, but he is excited to see what creative options for performances they can uncover that still align with the COVID-19 precautions.
Also, McWilliams said it is especially difficult to perform with social distancing and face coverings because the audience “needs to see performers’ mouths and facial expressions,” to deliver a good performance.
However, he is optimistic this new challenge will allow them to “experiment with theatre,” which will increase the skill levels and expand the horizons of the actors and actresses’ experience.
As far as what the theatre is going to specifically look like this semester, McWilliams said the department is still “in the process of analyzing the details.”