Students of WLHS have the opportunity to participate in a wide variety of co-curriculars that allow them to explore their strengths and talents, grow in confidence, and build valuable relationships. Some of the co-curriculars international students are currently involved in include: basketball, forensics, chess club, robotics, choir, track, culture club, cheerleading, and many more!
One more way to get involved is drama. This weekend WLHS held performances of its annual musical; the show this year is Newsies. There are many ways to be involved creatively behind the scenes, including costumes, set-building, and lighting design. Oumjy Zhang ('21, South Korea) and Chau Bang "Lily" Dang ('23, Vietnam) are part of the hair and makeup crew. Cat Chan Chu (’20, Vietnam) was cast as one of the performers and shared about her experience:
Q. What made you decide to audition for Newsies?
A. I was in the musical last year and found it was really fun. I wanted to try out something new. Musicals are not something we do in Vietnam and we don’t have extracurriculars there. Last year I got into the cast of Sound of Music. This year I watched part of Newsies on Youtube, and I was excited to try dancing. Newsies has a lot of dancing. Last year I was part of the chorus and was mostly singing.
Q. Tell us about your role in Newsies.
A. I’m in dance ensemble but I also sing. In Newsies, it can be happy and excited, or it can be aggressive and ready to fight. It’s singing, dancing, and a little acting. I appear in 5 scenes. I react to what the main character does, and I’m part of the Newsies crowd.
Q. How do you balance homework and study, and rehearsals?
A. It’s tough. These two weeks have been really busy, but during rehearsal I’m not on stage all the time. So that’s the good thing. I can do my homework during the time I’m off. Then when I get home, I try to finish as much as I can, and stay up if I need to. And I try to do my homework ahead because some teachers put assignments up early, and I can read ahead. And when I’m offstage, I try to do as much as I can.
Q. What was a memorable moment during rehearsals for Newsies?
A. I really liked when, after about a two-month period, we finally got to put on costumes and makeup and use the lights and mic, and everything feels real. I just feel like we pulled everything off.
Q. What do you want people to know about the show before they come to see it?
A. There will be some interesting characters in it, for example Hannah from Mr. Pulitzer’s office. Abby is doing a good job in her role. I think the audience will fall in love with her and her accent. Overall it’s really exciting, even for non-attentive audience, because it’s really fun with the dance and singing, and the plot is really easy to understand.