New program geared towards students interested in musicals, drama
There’s a little drama going on at Mac-Hi – but this drama is something to sing about.
Mac-Hi Choir Director Melissa Cunnington started up a new class this year geared toward students interested in musical productions and drama, appropriately called Music/Drama Production. It’s based upon a mini-musical Cunnington produced with students several years ago that sparked more interest from students. As it turned out, there was a shift in available classes offered at the high school, and Cunnington needed just one more elective to teach during the school day. So the drama began.
This is the first “for credit” drama class offered at Mac-Hi, and the school doesn’t have an after school club for such an activity. However, students have nicknamed the class “Drama Club,” Cunnington said.
The 17 students in the class meet daily and are working towards perfecting their upcoming Nov. 3 performance of “Beauty IS a Beast,” a fairytale drama written for younger audiences. The student actors don’t sing in this particular production, but Cunnington said she anticipates musicals interspersed with dramatic plays in the class’s future.
Cunnington said the students may have another show ready right before the winter break or in early January, depending on class size after the semester rolls over. She hopes to continue to see the class’s population increase as students hear more about it.
“I am extremely appreciative of Melissa’s willingness to make this opportunity available for our students,” said Mac-Hi Principal Ralph Brown. “We do have a group of students who are very interested in drama and performing in public. They are thrilled about the class.”
Though still a new class, Cunnington said she has noticed students reaping the rewards of the experience already.
“The most rewarding thing so far that I have seen is that the kids are very proud and excited to be on stage performing,” Cunnington said. “I can see that they love expressing themselves in new ways as we experiment with different personalities, emotions, and characters. They are eager to learn and want to have as many performance opportunities as possible. This has been a very rewarding experience for me as well because I have never directed formal theater before.”
Students will perform “Beauty IS a Beast” the morning of Nov. 3 at 9:30 a.m. for elementary students, and then the general public is invited to attend the evening performance at Jack Williams Auditorium at Mac-Hi, with the curtain rising at 7 p.m. Tickets are just $3 per person at the door to help cover the cost of expenses for the production.