Local pupils’ play proves need for arts in schools

I attended the first of two performances of “How the Grinch Stole the Holidays” at William H. Carr JHS 194 in Whitestone last Thursday. If anyone wanted to see why we need to keep our music, art, etc., programs alive and funded in our public schools, you had to have seen Dec. 17’s final performance.

As you entered the building, one could not help but notice the way the lobby was decorated with the students’ art and the students, parents and teachers who were there to meet and greet you as you came in. There were ticket and snack sales and an electricity in the air.

The show opened with holiday numbers by the band, led by teacher Scott Martin, that included solos by students and then the clever and well-choreographed show went on. The scenery, props and costumes were all made by students and the students also did the lighting, sound and curtains and assisted with the choreography, directing and, of course, acting — which was fabulous.

Needless to say, the Grinch “stole” the show, but there were so many students, teachers, administrators and parents who all had a part in making it happen that you could feel their enormous sense of pride and accomplishment at putting this show together.

Many thanks to the principal, Richard Garino, and the entire staff, including the custodians and school safety officers for a job well done and special kudos to teachers Andrew L. Burke, who edited and re-wrote the play as well as directed the show, and Jill Fodera, the choreographer.

Richard Sand

Fresh Meadows

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