Curriculum Series and School of the Arts Begin

by RoxyRegionalTheatre on September 4, 2015

My greatest regret is that no one had the time or skill to teach me how to read. Maybe it was the era from which I came. Maybe it was the lack of patience. Maybe it was my thick skull. Whatever it was, I only gained the joy of pleasure reading late in life.

Our curriculum productions are geared toward correcting that mistake for others. I strongly believe that when a child/student/young person sees and hears a book come to life, leaping from the page to the stage, something will click for them. Perhaps they will really read that piece of literature, read more about that subject, or just read.

This summer my nighttime reading is Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. I have of late (almost too late, to tell the truth) been reading the full novel, not just the playwright’s text. There are so many more character details which cannot all be put in a script, details which I hope subtly fill out a character in performance.

For instance, with Thenardier in Les Miserables, nowhere in the musical’s script does it say he is Gavroche’s father, nor that he escaped the Bastille by balancing himself on the topmost parapet in a raging thunderstorm. But these bits can be useful in portraying a character, especially for an actor like myself whose strong suit is not music and whose dance skills are nil.

Go, Dog. Go! first came into our consciousness when Josh Bernaski performed it for Nashville Children’s Theatre. A real pro, Josh had endeared himself to us by covering a role in Forever Plaid with only a few days’ notice.

Go, Dog. Go! was full of color, high jinks, audience participation, running gags, roller skates, funny hats and colorful trees. My favorite moment was when Josh bumped into the stage wall. One foot went offstage and one foot stayed on. After he took some time and brushed himself off, he got up with one roller skate on his foot. He then proceeded to single skate around the stage for a while until he smacked into the wall on the other side of the stage. This time when he got up, he magically had on two skates!

Go, Dog. Go! plays for school groups at 9:15am and 11:30am from September 21 through October 9. Teachers with groups of 20 or more may contact the box office at roxytheatre@bellsouth.net or (931) 645-7699 for bookings.

The fall session of the Roxy Regional School of the Arts begins next Saturday, September 12. Aspiring students must first have participated in the School of the Arts, spent a summer in the Parks & Rec program, or appeared in a production on the Roxy stage. All others need to audition on the first day with a prepared piece of a dozen lines or so, or read a piece which will be provided. The cost is $60/month for acting classes only from 9:00am to 11:00am, or $100/month for acting, dance and voice from 11:00am to 12:30pm.

See you at the theatre!

[John McDonald]

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