“Macbeth: The Musical” – a musical comedy version of Macbeth – with student-created characters and lines has been performed by students in the school district’s Gifted And Talented Education (GATE) program, or “gifted learner” program, through the second and third weeks of February. The GATE students at each elementary school site in the Oakdale Joint Unified School District have presented two to three performances of the musical, each site with its own cast.
While writing and performing the play meets California learning standards, it helps gifted learners in other ways.
“Students are learning to develop coping strategies, time management skills, and improve their speaking skills while developing their creativity through the medium of theater,” said OJUSD GATE teacher Brenda Combs.
Combs added that the students at the different sites took some creative license and made up some of their own characters and lines while using humor and music as a learning method. The number of performers also varied since there are a different number of GATE students at each school and the students were responsible for creating their own costumes. Those factors gave each site’s play its own unique flair.
“Macbeth: The Musical” also involved the audience in the performance where some actors held up signs that encouraged audience members to “Gasp” or say, “Ewww.”
There are approximately 120 students in the GATE program district wide.