If you were to walk around the third floor of our school building, you couldn’t help but notice the banners that are hung along the walls of the third floor. These banners are not there to honor sport teams, but rather to celebrate the journey that our student thespians take each spring. As you stroll through the hallway gazing upon the faces of these alumni, you begin to notice something interesting. The smiles on their faces seem to tell a story. A story that can’t truly be appreciated until one witnesses the culminating end to this annual theatrical journey.
With this event in mind, last weekend our Parish Hall once again became alive with the gift of musical theatre. The school colors of blue that were recently painted on the walls of this gathering space served as an invitingly proud backdrop for the transformation of our “St. Agnes Theatrical Arena”. And after seeing the production first hand, I found myself captivated by the creative energy that lives within our St. Agnes thespians.
As anyone who has ever faced the bright lights of the stage might attest, the journey towards a dramatic creation is more about the process than merely the destination of reaching the closing night performance. Along this journey, like the many St. Agnes middle school students before them have discovered, the Light of Christ seems to shine even more brightly as you step upon the stage to sing, dance and perform one’s lines. The uniqueness of this curricular program is one which reveals the artistic gifts that most of our students didn’t even know existed within themselves.
The goal of this creative program is to expose, engage and excite our students to the wonder of musical theatre. And the process toward show time is what makes the journey a true learning experience. After our amazing director arrives at a production that fits the talents and potential of the developing actors and vocalists, our young people audition and are selected as a cast member. From there our student thespians begin to learn vocal techniques and choreographed dance routines. In addition, they learn how to represent their character, rehearse a style of delivery and develop the ability to emotionally resonant with an audience. Of equal importance, the students also learn to construct a set design and the required props that are used for the performance. And as you might imagine, the development of these musical and theatrical skills require countless hours of afterschool and weekend rehearsals that unite the developing talents of those students whose individual gifts all find a home on the playhouse stage.
This year’s performance of “Flapper” was truly an event. And of course, events such as this don’t just occur, they take countless hands to steer and steady the ship. As such, I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to our talented Director, Liz Ehrman and her dedicated team of assistants: Kathy Majerowicz, Heather King, Angela Romeo and Dan Baker. Thank you all!