BSM Theater Performs “White Christmas”


Courtesy of the White Christmas Cast

Senior Bianca Mojica as one of the lead roles in the play.

Benilde-St. Margaret’s 2022 winter production play, Irving Berlin’s White Christmas, had its opening night on Thursday, November 11. The play follows former soldiers and now world-renowned singers and dancers, Bob Wallace and Phil Davis, 10 years after World War II. After meeting and falling in love with Betty and Judy Haynes, they follow the two sisters up to an inn in Vermont, where they are scheduled to perform for the Christmas season. They soon learn the inn is having economic difficulties and decide to put on a show to help bring business back.

In picking the play, Math teacher and Drama Department Director Jacob Mahler wanted to put part of his focus on the male leads due to the next scheduled show, Mamma Mia, being female lead centered. However, a main challenge was finding the right scheduling placement for the show. The play would have usually been performed around Halloween, however the Christmas theme pushed it back a month. Mahler encouraged students to show up to see classmates perform with a new energy that they don’t usually see. “You don’t get to see that side of them in a classroom setting, and it really gives you a chance to see and applaud somebody for something [you don’t usually see]” Mahler said.

Everyone has worked really hard on it, and it’s been kind of great to see everyone dedicate themselves to learning their role,

— Michael McDonald

Junior Michael McDonald was casted as Bob Wallace. In his favorite scene, he and Davis, played by senior Lance Hoover, had to fill in for Betty and Judy’s song and dance number since they had left. Hiking up their pants and twirling their fans, they sang the song “Sisters”. McDonald’s main challenge was being able to work with the pressure of memorizing lines and learning the tap-dance choreography. To prepare for the role, McDonald watched previous performances in movies or other plays to gain some insight into his character. “[Figuring] out how that person fits in, how that person interacts with other people, and delivers lines and reads things as opposed to how Bob would [is] interesting.” McDonald said.

Lance Hoover, playing Phil Davis, recounted the different types of acting he tried for the character. The role had been played frantically and nonchalantly, however Hoover was working through different acting types to make it feel natural. One of Hoover’s favorite scenes to work on had been the scene at the end, where Betty and Bob reunite. “The scene at the very end where I give[a] gift to Michael who plays Bob Wallace and we have a little banter…It’s really fun because you get to see Bianca’s character, Betty, reunited with Bob, and it’s kind of cool because I feel like the orchestrator of how that happening,” Hoover said.

Senior Bianca Mojica played the role of Betty Haynes who can be described as strong-willed and dramatic. Mojica explained that she did not go into the audition expecting to get a certain role– she was excited to be able to spend time with her friends, but was happy that she was casted as Betty. She did a little research for the role, but the hardest part was singing the song “Love, you didn’t do right by me”. “I didn’t really know how to navigate it. So I just had to go through it a lot, talk to my voice teacher and figure it out,” Mojica said.

The cast of Irving Berlin’s White Christmas have worked to showcase the performance. The cast and directors have spotlighted their effort and taken time to bring up the production. “Everyone has worked really hard on it, and it’s been kind of great to see everyone dedicate themselves to learning their role,” McDonald said.