Grace Harlan ’18, for her first assignment as a journalist for LA, accompanied Dance Director Brian Feigenbaum and the LA dance troupe to the 2017 Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland. The 2017 issue of the Journal had already gone to press by the time they returned, so we present excerpts of Grace’s blog here, for your reading enjoyment.
May 24, 2017: Preparing for the Fringe Festival GROTON, Mass. — As LA Dance gears up for their trip to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, it's obvious that a whole lot of work goes into the preparation — and not just from the student performers. Three faculty members, Director of Dance Brian Feigenbaum, Director of Theatre Joel Sugerman, and art teacher Dina Mordeno, will be accompanying the 12 student dancers (and one student journalist) on the trip to the worldrenowned two-week art festival in Scotland. Not only will the students be performing on numerous occasions on two continents, but they will also have the chance to see other acts representing dance, music, and theatre.
August 9, 2017: London Calling LONDON, England — Despite landing at what felt like 2 a.m., we all managed to successfully pass through customs and receive our luggage this morning at the airport. As soon as we boarded our bus, the tour of London began. We passed by the streets of South Kensington, the Royal Palace, Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and Parliament, all before 10 a.m. The bus then dropped us off, and we were able to explore and eat lunch in small groups.
August 10, 2017: Last Night in London The morning started out with a quick breakfast, and then a group walk to Siobhan Davies Studios. The team used the three-hour practice to go through the entire dance again, section by section, and ensure they are ready to perform this coming Monday. The practice required lots of concentration, but with the help of Mr. Feigenbaum — and each other — they were able to remember all the pieces of the dance, including intricate details like transitions.
Afterward, we all walked back to the hotel and proceeded from there to lunch. Then, we were allowed to split up into small groups and explore some more of the city. We were all happy to get the chance to go to bed after a long day of hard work. However, Victoria Hodgkinson ’18 said, “I wish we didn't have to leave London so soon.”
August 11, 2017: Hello, Scotland! EDINBURGH, Scotland — We were off to an early start today, with a 6 a.m. departure from London to Edinburgh. Our group shared a bus with a theatre group from Michigan and another from New Jersey. It was a relatively monotonous drive until we entered into Scotland, where we were greeted with a beautiful view of the ocean by the countryside. Even though most of us slept on the bus, by the time we rolled into the University of Edinburgh at 5 p.m., we were all tired from a full day's worth of travel. The group was happy to find excellent accommodations, and — finally — we were able to completely unpack. The most unique experience of the day was, by far, the flash mob rehearsal we attended. The American High School Theatre Festival (AHSTF) organized the dance to the opening song of the musical Hamilton, and it seemed as though we were the only group that had never actually seen the dance done before. The Hamilton theme struck close to home for us LA students, resulting in Fairlight Chemelli ’19 declaring, “We should totally perform this for Mr. Scheibe's birthday next year.” Perhaps it is a good thing today was so tiring, for now maybe we can all sleep through the jitters and excitement that await us with the first day of Fringe tomorrow.
FALL 2018 LAWRENCE ACADEMY 13
Lawrence Academy's annual alumni magazine.