CHHS Music Theater
Spelling Bee Leaves Audience Roaring with L-A-U-G-H-T-E-R
Audience participation and improvisation are among the key elements that make the 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee such a fun show. And when high school students are able to have the district's administrators participate, the fun goes to another level!
CHUFSD Superintendent Stephen Walker was one thrust into the spotlight with this talented group of actors. “It was a little terrifying,” he admitted. “These actors are so good and I didn’t want to do anything to diminish their performance. I also quickly realized that I shouldn’t quit my day job.”
The small but mighty cast of 11 students fully embraced the unique aspects of this musical, in large part, because of the trust they have built among their group. Senior John Erskine, who has now performed in five shows at CHHS, says: “The theater experience in CHHS is really like no other; the sense of comradery is unbelievable. You really feel as if you grow much closer to the cast and crew as the production develops.”
Co-Director, Music Director and Pianist Michael Katman reiterated that the whole experience of doing this show has been wonderful. “Because of the audience participation and improvisation inherent to this show, it keeps it new,fresh and funny every night,” he said. “The kids continue to amaze me with their ability to find the laughs and mine them for all they're worth.”
The actors also say that doing a show like this requires a great deal of trust among the cast and crew, and the sense that you can take a risk.
“It has been so fun to watch this group of students grow from a bunch of individuals into a real team,” said Co-Director, Co-Music Director and Piano Accompanist Sara O’Brien. “I also need to shout out the mighty stage crew for their dedication and commitment to putting on a great show through sound, lights, and organization of props.”
She continued: “I am so thankful to the community members and local businesses that have supported us in our fundraising efforts. I am also extremely grateful to our amazing Croton Harmon Schools family for their constant support and encouragement. It truly takes a village, and we have the best!”