The 25th Annual Blue Whale Cafe was streamed for the first time online last Friday featuring student and faculty performances as well as important causes. Despite not being able to gather in person all at once for the show, the performers, crew, and Arts Council pulled off an incredible virtual performance for this milestone year of Blue Whale Cafe!
Blue Whale Cafe is a cherished MICDS tradition that allows students and faculty to showcase their talents and come together to celebrate the arts in our community. This year, Blue Whale took on a virtual format (scroll down to watch the full show); audience members watched from home while performers took to the stage to perform original, classical, and modern pieces demonstrating their instrumental and vocal talents.
In anticipation of the event, Co-Master of Ceremonies Kendal Windom ’21 shared, “Honestly, I think this will be the best Blue Whale because everyone is dedicated to making this an amazing show to alleviate the fears and frustrations of COVID-19 for our performers, production crew, and audience.” Kendal also starred in the Blue Whale Cafe promotional video.
Instead of traditional ticket sales for one charity, viewers had the opportunity to donate to one or multiple causes of their choice during “commercial breaks” throughout the show. “Every act has picked a wonderful cause to support in Blue Whale this year, and we really hope you’ll consider donating to these causes,” explained Jack Morris ’21, Co-Master of Ceremonies.
In total, Blue Whale 2021 showcased many outstanding acts that featured singing, cello, violin, electric and acoustic guitar, bass, drums, musical theatre, and more. Below are the timestamps of each performance followed by a link to the respective cause that the performer or group encouraged viewers to support:
- 00:01:15 Akshara Sriram ’22 and Amelia Markwell ’22 (WildAid)
- 00:09:21 Cate Cody ’22 (Wild Bird Rehabilitation)
- 00:12:56 Ava Janes ’23 and Ellie Chen ’26 (Crisis Nursery of St. Louis)
- 00:16:36 Aanya Tiwari ’23 and Ava Janes ’23 (CHADS Coalition for Mental Health)
- 00:22:24 Alizeh Jawaid ’23 (Covenant House)
- 00:28:43 Ally Kalishman ’21 (Best Buddies)
- 00:35:50 Amelia Markwell ’22 (EndAlz)
- 00:38:31 Upper School Fine & Performing Arts Department Chair & Fine Arts Teacher Brad Heinemann and Peter D’Addario (The WaterWheel Foundation)
- 00:44:11 Ananya Radhakrishnan ’21 and Angela Shiang ’21 (American Cancer Society)
- 00:52:13 Dilyn Halverson ’21 (Foundation Fighting Blindness)
- 00:54:33 Ilana Meissner ’21 (Missouri Veterans Commission)
- 00:59:54 Simrin ’21 and Happy Phatak ’23 (KEEN St. Louis)
- 01:06:49 Jaylah McMurtry ’21 (MusiCares)
- 01:20:39 Jack Morris ’21 and Mimi Brown ’21 (Foundation Fighting Blindness)
- 01:27:40 The Melancholic Fuzz (Clean Air Task Force)
- 01:36:14 Mimi Brown ’21 (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation)
- 01:40:27 Seabass and the Fishermen (St. Jude)
In case you missed it, watch the 2021 Blue Whale Cafe below!
Patrick Huber, Upper School Fine & Performing Arts Teacher, commented on the unique challenges and opportunities of the 2021 show. “The challenge was to keep a positive energy in the room when the students were performing, so it wasn’t about mourning what we lost due to the pandemic, but about celebrating what we could do in this unique situation. The performers picked up on this, creating their music with courage and expressiveness. It was exciting to foreground the charitable aspect of Blue Whale again. Twenty-five years ago we started Blue Whale explicitly as a way to raise money for and awareness of environmental issues. Over the years the name has remained, but we had lost touch with the environmental causes. This year the digital platform gave us the opportunity to once more make awareness of social issues an important part of the viewer’s experience.”
Thank you to all who worked hard to produce and perform in an outstanding virtual 25th Blue Whale Cafe!
- Executive Producer: Tiffany D’Addario, Upper School Fine Arts Teacher
- Video Producers: Dan Sadicario, Upper School English Teacher, and Ava Janes
- Audio Producer: Patrick Huber, Upper School Fine & Performing Arts Teacher
- Editor: Dan Sadicario
- Commercial Editor: Eliza Dorf ’23
- Lighting: Ilana Meissner, Raina Compton ’23, Mimi Brown, Ash Aranha ’23, Michael D’Addario, Alexander Huber ’19
- Decorations: Kendall Rozen ’21, Mimi Brown, Jack Morris, Ava Janes, Alizeh Jawaid, Emma Scally ’22, Harper Graves ’22
- House Manager: Max Campbell, Upper School History Teacher
- Stand-in: Theodore Elfenbein ’23
- Hosts: Kendal Windom and Jack Morris
- Blue Whale Cafe Logo Design Winner: Dilyn Halverson
For Seldom Scene:
- Technical Director: Brian Purlee, Upper School Theater Technical Director, Maker and Robotics Coordinator & Science Teacher
- Floor Design: Kendall Rozen
- Scenic Crew: Mimi Brown, Kendall Rozen, Ilana Meissner, Meredith Purlee ’23, Tiffany D’Addario, Dilyn Halverson
- Producer: Mimi Brown
- Camera: Kendall Rozen
- Screenplay: Harper Graves
- Music: Jack Morris
- Cast: Kendal Windom and Mimi Brown