By Paula Ebben

HAMILTON (CBS) – Families and friends, lighting the way for some North Shore students after the power went out near the end of their school play. The audience just grabbed their phones and turned on their flashlights. The middle school students in Hamilton were total pros and did not miss a line.

“I directed James and the Giant Peach,” says teacher Christine de Lima.

“I am the narrator of the story,” says eighth grader Margo Tsouvalas.

“I was the grasshopper, one of the insects,” adds Leo Kagan who is also in eighth grade.

Audience uses cellphones during play at Hamilton High School (Image credit Kevin Berube)

It was the latest production of the Miles River Middle School drama club in Hamilton. “It was our second performance in a three show run,” de Lima says. But with the auditorium seats filled with family and friends and 10 minutes to go in the performance, uh oh.

“All of a sudden the lights went out,” Leo says. “I was like, OK, I guess we’re going to do this in the dark.”

But then something unexpected happened. “One member of the audience took out their cell phone and turned on the flash,” Margo says.

And then more did the same. “All of a sudden there was like 50, 60 people all with their flashlights on,” Leo remembers.

Audience uses cellphones to light Hamilton school play during blackout (Image credit Sam Caswell)

“It looked like stars. I almost cried. I was holding in a lot of tears because I just thought it was so beautiful,” according to Margo.

They weren’t exactly spot lights, but cell phones never looked so good. “Visually it was really beautiful and it was also just a really lovely moment, seeing everyone in the audience loving the students and supporting the show so much, and wanting it to continue,” de Lima says.

And as the bows were taken, the message was clear, the show must definitely go on. “It was just so cool to see so many people coming together to help us out,” Leo says.

Paula Ebben

  1. Carol Ann McKenzie
    a few seconds ago
    I was there and this was the most magical evening I have attended in a long time! We in the audience may have lit the auditorium but the real kudos go to those kids who did not let the complete blackout throw them for one second! The kids kept on going without skipping a beat. The room was in complete blackout, the electric keyboard and vocal mics went completely silent. The keyboard player rushed to the baby grand piano on the other side of the auditorium with her music in hand, and as one person held a cell phone to light the music she stood and played the piano until another person ran over to her with a seat for her to sit on. The drummer kept on drumming, the kids belted out their songs from the stage to overcome their failed vocal mics! This show certainly did go on and everyone in the audience cheered with delight and pride at what a wonderful job those young thespians did that night!
    The whole room was radient in that darkness! Amazing !


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