Posts Tagged ‘Acting Education Commissioner Bill Beardsley’

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Camden Hills Regional High School

November 8, 2016

Raising Our Voices in Camden Hills Regional High Schools’ Sister Act

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Program cover Rafi Baeza

Raise Your Voice! becomes the central theme of the current musical production at Camden Hills Regional High School’s production of Sister Act. Based upon the hit 1992 Touchstone Pictures’ movie, and with original music by Alan Menken, this upbeat musical is sure to have audience members tapping their toes. When Deloris Van Cartier (Rebekah Schade) takes refuge in a convent after having witnessed a murder at the hands of her boyfriend Curtis (Nick Watts), she discovers that she has a gift that is even greater than her star-struck dreams of being on the stage – sharing the power of music. As the nuns discover the joy of raising their voices and “shaking their booties” they, including Deloris, also begin to discover a new strength and resolve inside of themselves.

Photo Marti Stone

Musical theater, with its costumes, lights, dancing, and amazing sets is a spectacle for the whole community to enjoy. Yet parents of impressionable young children are cautioned that the directors have rated this show PG 13 for violence and suggestive language. Some children may simply enjoy the chance to see live theater; and parents may find that the story line is a springboard for important conversations. In Sister Act, musical theater becomes instructive as well as entertaining. The subject of domestic abuse becomes an undercurrent in an otherwise light and humorous story. The writers have presented this serious topic in a comedic manner by distracting the listener with zany “thug” characters. However, as we look closer at the material, we find that the theme of “raising one’s voice” is the lesson embedded in the story line. Within the plot, tension mounts in the finale of the show as Curtis discovers where Deloris is hiding and makes plans to “keep her silent” for good. In solidarity, the sisters of the convent (including the rigid character of Mother Superior (Molly Mann)) raise their voices and make a vow to protect Deloris.   In addition, Deloris finds her own voice, and takes a powerful stand against Curtis – with the strength of her sisters, she is able to “raise her voice” and stand up to the bully. The theme of justice prevails, as we find out what happens to Curtis and his thugs in the final number.

Photo Marti Stone

On Broadway, Sister Act was nominated for five Tony Awards, including Best Musical. With Lyrics by Glenn Slater, Book by Cheri and Bill Steinkellner, and Additional Book Material by Douglas Carter Beane, Sister Act is being presented by CHRHS in special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). www.MTIshows.com

The CHRHS production of Sister Act will play November 4, 5, 11, 12 at 7:00 PM and November 6 at 2:00 PM.   Advance ticket sales are $12 for Reserved (front section) seats and $10/$6 for General Admission. At-the-door prices increase to $15/$12/$8. Tickets can be purchased in advance online at stromtickets.com or reserved by calling 236-7800 ext 282. Email stromtickets@gmail.com for ticket orders and more information.

 

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Celebrating Student Artists

December 3, 2015

Hall of Flags – Friday, December 4

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The Maine Department of Education and the Maine Arts Commission are holding a celebration of Excellence in Maine Visual and Performing Arts Education hosted by First Lady, Ann LePage, December 4, in the Hall of Flags at the State House in Augusta. Joining the First Lady are State Board of Education Chair Martha Harris, and Maine Arts Commission Executive Director Julie Richards, and Acting Education Commissioner Bill Beardsley. Legislators, Mick Devin (Nobleboro) and Martin Grohman (Biddeford) will also be present to recognize students from their districts.

The Excellence in Maine Visual and Performing Arts Education is a rotating exhibit that displays artwork throughout the Statehouse Complex and the Department of Education in the Cross Building. Sixty-three students from AOS 93, AOS 92, MSAD 41, and the Biddeford School district will have their artwork displayed through the end of February. Additionally, student musicians from AOS 92 will perform at the celebration. Mrs. LePage will be presenting each student a certificate and a letter from Governor Paul LePage recognizing the talent of Maine students.

Governor LePage’s letter to the students reads in part, “The arts are a vitally important part of any education because it’s the creative thinking that leads to imagining new ways of making things work and improving the world we live in.”

Maine DOE Visual and Performing Arts Specialist Beth Lambert says, “I am so proud of the work Maine arts teachers are doing with our students throughout the state. It is a privilege to have these students come to Augusta and be honored in this way. Arts education is essential for all students in order to gain the skills needed to develop college and career readiness, such as critical thinking, collaboration, and creativity so that Maine kids can succeed in the ever-changing diverse and global economies of today’s world.”

For more information contact, Visual and Performing Arts Specialist Beth Lambert at beth.lambert@maine.gov or 624-6642.

 

 

 

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