Theater Program Seeks Changes For Upcoming Year

May 11, 2018

The theatre department has excelled in many ways including competitions and their local productions. For the upcoming school year, changes will be made in order to better the program.

Terry Harbison, theatre teacher, has instructed a new technical class to help with oncoming productions for the school year. This will be the first time the school has offered this course.

“Next year, we are going to have higher standards to expand the program with the technical theatre class we are offering next year. I already have a few guys to train to run the light board. Having students trained through all the technical aspect will make all of the productions better at the school and at the VBC,” Harbison said.

In addition to the new class, Harbison will make his class smaller. By him doing this, it will help out each individual student in the long run.

“One of the reasons I am making the class smaller is to individualize attention to people so that it can really help them with their performances and competitions,” Harbison said.

Narci Hadrian, sophomore, is one of the upcoming students that will be a part of his class for next year. She believes that his methods will help her and her classmates do better with their talents and skills.

“I like the idea of it because it’s a way for Mr. Harbison to get more one on one time and work with people to help them improve over the course of the year. Normally when there’s more, he can’t focus because he has to make sure everyone is acting like they are supposed to be. But with a smaller group, he won’t have to worry as much discipline wise and trying to keep the class’s noise level down. He can work more on talent and help us achieve to do better,” Hardin said.

With the individualized attention, Harbison will give, it will allow a chance for him to challenge his students. He wants to challenge them by exposing them to more classical pieces to help them as actors and actresses.

“I am going to challenge my students especially the kids who have been in the program a couple of years to do more challenging pieces for competition,” Harbison said. “A lot of them want to gravitate towards a modern piece or some want to slam poetry and turn it into a readers theatre piece. And that’s fine readers theatre has been a strength of ours which makes me proud. But I want to challenge my students to be more exposed to more classics and something with literary merit.”

Next year’s musical production will be “Singing in the Rain”. Harbison’s choice of “Singing in the Rain” is the exact kind of music he has desired for exposing his students to classics.

“I wanted to do something more classic and something that is music still that we could have active dance pieces. It also fits for next year because we have a lot of strong guys and I wanted to pick something that was guy heavy. I had to pick something that would accommodate the students I have as well and something that I would enjoy that people will come to. Because if it’s gonna bore me then it’s probably gonna bore the general public. The target audience isn’t me it’s the people that aren’t huge musical fans,” Harbison said.

Harbison’s main goal is to help each student to gain success. He wants everyone to have an opportunity in the theatre field.

“There’s a lot of students here who enjoy theatre but don’t want to be on stage and that scares them to death. However, I’ve seen students in all my classes when you put a light board in front of them and they start messing with lights and programming the board they do excellent. It’s about finding and making sure I have opportunities for every student to find success in theatre whether he or she likes to be onstage or backstage. I’ve talked to the counselors on trying to find more ways for students to be allowed to be involved in theatre as for as different electives or different things we can do in the coming years,” Harbison said.


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