"Ramayana!" 2011 Information

Welcome to the wonder that is the Mount Madonna School Ramayana!

Whether you are a first-timer or a returning veteran, be prepared for an exciting experience of growth, challenge and fun! Being in a play, and helping to produce a play, are major commitments that demand a great amount of personal time and effort. The key is to invest fully in the proceedings and enjoy the creative process of discovery all the way through our children’s wonderful performances.

The Ramayana is an annual all-school event in which the entire student body takes part. This magical theatrical production of drama, dance and song has been entertaining audiences for 32 years. In the preschool years, students may begin by taking part in the ever-popular forest animal scene. Gradually they work their way through various roles as dancers, singers, monkeys, demons, and martial artists until they finally emerge in the lead roles in their high school years. Behind the scenes, a large supporting cast of parents, teachers, alumni and Mount Madonna Center staff take on the roles of prop makers, costumers, make-up artists, technicians, musicians, stage crew, and concessionaries. The full MMS community comes together to make the Ramayana our largest school event of the year.

We are happy to announce our return to the Mexican Heritage Theater in San Jose for our 2011 production of the Ramayana! The Mexican Heritage Theater in San Jose, CA, is one of the largest cultural centers in the nation.

Why the Mexican Heritage Theater?
Last year was our first year at this venue and we received positive reviews from our families and guests. The adjoining Pavilion and classrooms also provide us with excellent spaces to accommodate all of our 215 students and support needs. It is a 530 seat theater and we expect to sell out this year. This venue attracts the large surrounding community, many for whom The Ramayana is a familiar story. Buy your tickets early!

How far is it?
The Mexican Heritage Theater is located at 1700 Alum Rock Road, San Jose, CA, a few blocks from Highway 101. It takes 45 minutes from MMS and about 50 minutes from Santa Cruz.

Tickets will go on sale at the end of April. We will use BrownPaperTickets.com again this year and a link to the site will be on the Mount Madonna School website. The Sunday show sells out first, and we expect all performances to sell out this year. Thursday, June 9 is our Preview Performance. This is a specially priced show for school or nonprofit groups, our families and the MMC community. Buy your tickets early!

Ramayana Participation – The Parent Role
The success of MMS and the Ramayana relies on Parent Participation. The Ramayana is our largest community building event, and perhaps the most rewarding experience for everyone. This endeavor is truly an “it takes a village” event. Families participating for the first time often feel overwhelmed during the preparation, rehearsals and performances. Don’t hesitate to call the office or your Class Liaison with any questions or concerns you may have. To choose the areas of participation please take the survey at www.surveymonkey.com/s/RamayanaParentHelp. Once you go the link, you will easily be able to select areas you are willing to help in. It then takes us a few weeks to organize and collate all of the information. Please submit your choices by April 4. For additional information please be sure to download the PDF entitled Ramayana Parent Information Packet below.

Preschool/Kindergarten Participation
The Pre/K staff will be asking which students are choosing to participate in the Ramayana, and which days they will do so. Please let the staff know the level of participation your family chooses and know that in participating they must attend all designated rehearsals.

Ramayana are counted as ‘school days’
All schools are required to have a certain number of school days during the school year. The Ramayana rehearsals and performances are counted as ‘school days’. This means that these are not optional days for students to participate. Please do not schedule appointments for your children during scheduled rehearsals. If it is absolutely necessary that your child will be absent, elementary parents please email Benna () as well as letting their teachers know. Middle/High students need to communicate directly with Sampad.

Ramayana Intensive Week
Ramayana Intensive is the week before Tech Week, (May 31 – June 3), when rehearsals are held at the gym during school hours for most students, and afterschool rehearsals for middle and high school students. All students are expected to attend the Full Run Rehearsal at MMS Gym on Saturday, June 4. The rehearsal will begin with Act I and students are dismissed once the Director determines they are finished with their scenes. Students are expected to be at all designated rehearsals. Please do not schedule appointments for your child during these times.

What does Tech Week mean?
Monday, June 7 – Sunday, June 13 is Tech Week at the theater. During these dates no classes are held at school. These days are considered ‘school days’ and are part of our curriculum. All students, with the exception of Preschool-Kindergarteners who may opt out, are expected to participate in the production and attend rehearsals at designated times. We ask that parents do not schedule routine appointments or days off during these times.

Transportation to the Theater
MMS provides bus transportation to the theater from both sides of the mountain for all 3rd through 12th graders who are called Monday, June 6 through Wednesday June 8. Parents are responsible for transportation Thursday through Sunday and carpooling is encouraged. Preschool-2nd grade students’ parents will need to arrange transportation and supervision for all rehearsals and performances. Coordinators for Pre-2nd help organize their needs. More details will be available in March.

Tech Week Schedule
On Monday, June 6, ALL STUDENTS are called and we will be rehearsing Act I. Preschool through 6th graders will have Tuesday, June 7th as a rest day. On Tuesday, June 7, all 8th – 12th graders, and some 7th graders are expected when we will be rehearsing Act II. All students are called Wednesday, June 9 through Sunday, June 12.

This year we are able to schedule the Monday through Wednesday rehearsals starting at 10 am. We hope this earlier start time will make it easier on the students and families; it is a bit more in sync with our normal school hours. Thursday through Saturday will be late evenings, and Sunday is a matinee performance. A ‘Tech Schedule,’ including specific cast call times for the various grades and students will be distributed in April.

Forthcoming Ramayana Information:
• Information Packet – March
• Parent Participation Selection Process – March
• Parent Participation Scheduling and Coordination – April & May

• Transportation Schedule and Signups – May
• Tickets go on Sale – April