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SBHS Theatre Persists Remotely with Radio Plays

Santa Barbara High School’s renowned theatre department has officially begun it’s 2020-2021 season. Under the guidance of the new Theatre teacher, Justin Baldridge, the department has released three student-directed radio plays. The Halloween themed shows are all written by Tony Palermo and include an English manor murder mystery, a tale of cursed pirates, and a story from the Fourth Crusade in Turkey. In addition to being performed by students in the advanced theatre class, the plays were all sound-designed by students in the stagecraft class. Links can be purchased at for $20 each. The link includes access to all three shows and the whole family can listen together. Links will be available for purchase through November 30.

After Hunchback of Notre Dame, which was to be the final production of longtime director Otto Layman, was canceled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic, the future of SBHS Theatre seemed uncertain. However, the new season is getting off to a strong start. These plays were produced entirely remotely, but in the coming weeks, the advanced theatre class is going to be able to return to campus in small cohorts. Baldridge’s hope is to be able to produce a full play on-campus next semester if the school and district will allow it.

The brand new SBHS Theatre Arts Club has also begun meeting weekly over zoom. This club which is dedicated to fostering community among students interested in all aspects of theatre and led by club president Benjamin Watkins is open to all students at SBHS. It meets at lunch on Wednesdays and the link can be found on the Theatre Arts Club NEO page.


  • Emerson Steady, a senior, is honored to be Editor-in-Chief and write for The Forge for his third year. Working with The Forge's team of talented writers and covering the artists, athletes, clubs, and academics at our school has deeply connected Emerson to the SBHS community. In addition to journalism, he is very active in theatre at Santa Barbara High School and beyond. He writes music, and his dream is to write and compose for musical theatre.

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