November 4, 2016

A Spotlight on GOA’s Shining Star: Mikayla Spierer

Rebecca Casel ‘20

In late September, the high school put on a wonderful production of William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. The show cast two Juliets – juniors Mikayla Spierer and Shifra Zuckerman – and two Romeos, junior Theo Deitz-Green and senior Sam Zimerman.
Auditions for the play were held at the end of last year to give students enough time to learn their lines. This play, though entertaining to watch, is a very difficult production to produce, due in part to the language. Elizabethan English is unfamiliar to most people and it takes devotion and practice from the actors to deliver each line with precision.
Spierer noted that a main reason for her interest in GOA productions was due to her older sister Jessica’s commitment and involvement in past shows.
Juliet Capulet is a very difficult character to portray, according to Spierer. She said the major challenge in playing the role was “figuring out how I wanted to portray her, because there are a lot of different ways that you can say the same line.”
As time went on, she realized her connection to the character saying, “She’s a teenager too, struggling to overcome life’s challenges.”
Spierer's favorite scene in the play was undoubtedly the balcony scene.
“Not even for the reason that it’s the balcony scene,” she said, “but just because the lines are so playful and sweet that it’s really fun to perform.”
At times, attending rehearsals for the show was difficult. Spierer found it especially hard to project her voice while using the outdoor setting, and balancing her rehearsal time with her school work was not easy.
“We had rehearsal a couple times before school started, and then once school started it was every day from 4:30 to 7:00, and then the week of tech week we were at school from 4:30 to 9:00.”
Luckily, Spierer was able to alternate times to rehearse with Zuckerman, her fellow Juliet. While one was on stage acting, the other could be found doing homework behind the stage.
The production helped Spierer form relationships with students from other grades, which is one of her favorite part of participating in the arts.
“I have a lot of friends from other grades through being in the plays that I wouldn’t have [otherwise].”
Spierer describes the overall experience as “tiring but so worth it.” The entire cast’s effort paid off as they, along with the crew, put on a wonderful production.
Spierer’s commitment to the arts program at GOA is inspiring. Much of her school journey has been defined by these productions and the arts department is a highlight of her years at GOA.

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