For the second consecutive year, Ballard High School actors and musicians will help usher in the holiday season with a cheer of “Huzzah,” a meal of boar’s head, music and fun.


The school’s speech, art, band and choir departments are joining together for this year’s Madrigal Dinner, scheduled for 6 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 7, in the Ballard High School gym in Huxley. Tickets are $30 (which includes the meal and show), and are available online at http://www.ballard.k12.ia.us/news/2019/11/10941/ or in the high school’s activities office. The dinner is also a fundraiser for the school’s fine arts programs.


For the uninitiated, a Madrigal Dinner is a medieval-themed production with the players dressed in medieval attire, complete with a king, queen, bards and a jester. There will be medieval songs, some holiday music and familiar sing-alongs, said Director Lisa Ronca, a language arts teacher at Ballard.


The catered meal will include boar’s head (actually it’s pork loin), side dishes and beverages.


Ronca said people who attend should be prepared for “a lot of energy.”


“”We have awesome kids in our programs,” she said. “They put so much time and energy in, that I think it would be worth the time to see what they can do. Sometimes they really surprise you. This is also a fundraiser for the four programs, so any support we get is appreciated.”


Student Ryan Carlin, a senior who plays the role of Bard 1, said he wanted to get involved because the Madrigal Dinner is different from other productions he’s been involved in at the school.


“”It’s more formal, it’s more of a one-act play,” he said. “It’s smaller, it’s faster.”


He also said combining eating while performing creates a whole different element for performers.


“It feels like you’re being entertained, too,” he said.


Carlin said the audience should be ready for a fun night.


“Be ready to have a lot of sarcasm, and more clever jokes,” Carlin said.


Carter Thompson, a senior and first-timer in theater, plays the role of Bard 2. He said he’s enjoyed the opportunity to expand beyond his comfort zone.


“”I’ve never really been able to showcase my accent range around a bunch of people, just my close friends (Thompson does a mean Scottish brogue) so I get the chance to show people who I really am, because I’m just a diesel mechanic kind of guy, but no one’s really known I have a thing for acting, so … “


He echoed Carlin’s advice to be prepared to have fun.


“It’s going to be a very fun, outgoing performance, just enjoy yourself while you’re there,” Thompson said. “Just sit back, relax, have a laugh.”