Ann Richards isn’t the only school that has a cafetorium, but when it comes to multi purposing, ARS definitely takes the cake. The cafeteria not only doubles as an auditorium but also as a dance room, gym, cafeteria, and after school activities center.
“We’ve been sharing the space forever,” theatre director Ms. Marissa Castañón said.
Ms. Castañón and Ms. Doy Roberts are the most common users of the cafeteria, besides those eating meals, of course. First and eighth period are reserved for dance, leaving the rest of unscheduled time for theatre. Activities such as Girls Club and guest visits must fight to the death for a chance to be in the glorious cafegetorium. Although, there are the dark magical times of UIL, where theatre must rule over the cafeteria.
“It’s kind of like a volleyball team without having a net: Just going outside and saying, ‘just practice,’ with you know, no court, a ball,” Ms. Castañón said. “When people think we can rehearse anywhere it’s like, well we could but, you know is that really going to help us as much as it should?”
Many of the students have seen drill team in action or have heard the lively music coming from the cafeteria. Heads turn when you hear this, or loud shouting from dramatic monologues.
“The class is called drill team but it’s a dance class. There’s also a class called dance but it’s really color guard,” Ms. Roberts, teacher of drill team and 9th grade STARS, said.
Sometimes students and staff members can be seen standing at the windows looking at the students who are having class in the cafeteria.
“I’m sure a lot of the teachers wonder why it takes kids so long to do anything, and it’s because they’re standing watching us for five minutes- because we’re pretty entertaining,” Ms. Roberts said. “It’s distracting to a lot of people but it’s worth it.”
Distracting people and making them jealous is one thing that Ann Richards girls do best. For ten years, they have been figuring out new creative ways to be the best and crush all competition. They do this by seeing what is most distracting to students at our school and taking these techniques to competitions, by leaping high and pirouetting with style. Although the hard tile floor of the cafegetorium can be limiting at times for the dancers.
“We maybe don’t go full out all the time. For fear that somebody is going to be injured or hurt in some way,” Ms. Roberts said.