Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Ash Girl

The Burnett Drama department, under the direction of Mr. Marco Soriano, is performing their Spring production, The Ash Girl, from March 8-11.  I had the chance to watch the show last night, and although I am no Roger Ebert, my review is that the show was a smashing success.
To quote director Marco Soriano,
"The story is a poignant retelling of the classic 'Cinderella', where a girl, abandoned by her father, abused by her step-family, Ash Girl has buried her memory, her identity and is being seduced by the forces of the 'monster' Sadness and the Seven Deadly Sins...the dark voices inside our heads.  Whether we choose to listen to them, to fall under their spell, is ultimately our choice.  Everyone we encounter in life is a mirror; they show us a side of ourselves, either good or bad.  Only when she is able to see her own beauty in the mirror, when her passions are awakened by seeing herself reflected in the eyes of love, can Ash Girl be fully recognized."
  A familiar sounding fight that so many teenagers wrestle with....

Productions such as these are not single person efforts, and Mr. Soriano knows this.  His program thanked the countless people who aided in preparing the set, the program, and everything else that went into the performance. 
"I am humbled by the outpouring of support from both staff and students for this production.  It is said that 'it takes a village to raise a child'; well this child, Ash Girl,has had the fortune to be raised by the most supportive of villages: Burnett school."
These events truly exemplify a community coming together.  Special thanks go out to Mr. Bevan and the Technology department, Mrs. Carvalheiro-Nunes, Mrs. Moss and Ms. Taylor and the Art department, Ms. Cain and the Leadership class, Ms. Freeman and the Music classes, Ms. Johal for donations, Ms. McGuire for her help with program printing and Mrs. Jackson and the Textiles department for all their assistance with costume design.  Also worth thanking are the special guests Mr. Soriano brought in to assist with so many of the technical issues.  I have likely missed a few who contributed, but know that your efforts are appreciated. 
What always amazes me about the productions put on around a school is just how inspiring, talented and engaged our students are when given opportunities such as these. A crew of 21 actors, over 15 behind the scenes students plus countless others involved in set, costume and advertising efforts, plus the many staff involved in coordinating the production came together.  Students become so enthused about what they are doing, and so proud of what they produce that they do things that many people would doubt they are capable of.  The Ash Girl is a play of mature subject matter, somewhat dark by high school standards, and dealing with issues of self identity that must be handled delicately.  The students rise to the occasion, performing difficult roles with humor and inspiration, addressing difficult issues deftly.
Thanks again to all those who aided in the production, and special thanks to Mr. Soriano for his tireless efforts involved in pulling together a show of this magnitude.  Also, kudos to the students who amazed and inspired us with their performances and behind the scenes efforts.  Looking at the set, the costumes, the transitions, music, lighting and makeup, it truly was a production performed at a professional level.  Well done!  The show has 2 more performances, Thursday and Friday at 7 PM.  Don't miss your chance to watch something special.  I would be curious to hear your reviews.

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