New York Overnight

This past week, PRIED went on an overnight expeditionary learning trip to New York City. New York is one of my personal favorite places to visit so this was probably the most fun I’ve had on any field trip this year. Thursday started with a visit to the New York State Supreme Court. There, we learned the exact steps that everyone involved in a criminal trial goes through. We even got to witness a real-life trial as it was happening. I, for one, had no idea there were so many specific rules for what lawyers could and could not say/do. For example, when the prosecutor or defense lawyer is questioning a witness, they may only ask questions. They can’t make any statements, and if they say something without putting it in the form of a question, the other lawyer can object, and the judge will ask them to ask it in a question. There are so many things about our judicial system that I didn’t know so I loved getting to experience it all first hand.

That night we went to see the off-broadway production of STOMP. STOMP was absolutely incredible!!!! I can’t believe the musical and physical abilities of the performers. I also could not believe the amount of different sounds you can create with everyday objects. It looked like so much fun to be up there making an awesome soundtrack out of brooms, trash cans, lighters and so much more. I would have tried it myself at home if I didn’t fear hearing loss (I have a feeling my version would be very loud and off key). I think I’m speaking for everyone in that audience when I say WOW! I was pretty much speechless. Now I’m so pumped to start the next unit in music which will be about street music like STOMP.

The next day we woke up just in time for brunch at Ellen’s Stardust Diner. Ellen’s Stardust Diner is your average diner… Broadway style! All the staff are aspiring or professional broadway actors hoping to further their knowledge of their art. Each will perform a show-tune every few minutes singing and dancing on and around the tables. Every hour or so they take tips. The only catch about the tips is that they have to use them towards singing, dancing, or acting lessons (only things that will get them closer to their broadway dream). I thought this was a really cool idea, and I think everyone sitting at my table donated some.

As for our last adventure, we went to visit the infamous NBC Studios for a tour of several sets and a chance to create a clip from our own TV show. We started off by checking out the set of Nightly News with Lester Holt. Something I found really interesting about this set in particular was that it is what the hipster people of NBC call a “hot set.” This means that at any time that there is breaking news, this set can get up and operating within minutes. I can’t imagine the amount of staff they must have on-call at any given time just to make sure the set is always ready to go live. The next set we saw was surely my favorite set. The real set of SNL! I actually can’t believe I was standing within 60 feet of the backdrop for the cold open! Not to mention the lighting… if you want to talk about a lot (and I mean, like, millions) of lights! There was a copious amount of varied sized spotlights just hanging from the ceiling. I couldn’t help but think about how many hours it took to install them let alone all the people working behind the scenes operating them so the lighting is always just right. Our last set at NBC was the set of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. After checking it out, we were to create a clip from our own version of a late night talk show. We played the host, guest, announcer, band and some of us even got to be in the backstage crew! I was on audio which was sooo much fun! I felt like a professional, even if my work can’t back that up, it was a blast anyway.

Did I say that was the last adventure? Well, I lied. I think getting to our bus home in the rain in New York rush hour traffic was one of the biggest adventures of all. But what is a field trip without a transportation mishap and a near-heart attack? Boring. Well that sums it up. Another trip that didn’t disappoint.

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