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Neighbors Growing Together | Oct 21, 2017

FHS theatre class to take production on stage this month

By Nicole Major, Ledger staff writer | May 02, 2017

Intro to Theatre students will flex their thespian talents at 7:30 p.m. May 23 on stage inside the Fairfield High School auditorium.

Performing “Metamorphoses,” by award-winning American playwright and director Mary Zimmerman, the production, which will include quotes from the play, will be the first of its kind for students enrolled in the class.

“In the past, the class has never put on a production. This year we decided to make it more authentic,” said Kevin Hosbond, FHS English/language arts and assistant speech teacher.

Hosbond said the class merely “played” theatre, but never really got in-depth with the reality of it. He further explained that the class is using a revised curriculum that follows the fine arts standards of the Iowa Core curriculum.

“The former curriculum was similar, but involved a lot of paper and pencil pushing,” he said. “Students learned a lot of the components of theatre and acting, but had no reason to learn them. They just went through the motions and completed the assignments with no utility. The curriculum in the Iowa Core standards [requires] students to do most of the work in preparation for a full-scale theatrical production.”

Hosbond said that’s exactly what his students are doing now.

The group of 27 mostly 10th–12th graders is doing everything from designing the set to selecting and creating costumes and posters for the production.

“We also have one freshman from a study hall who is helping with technical work,” Hosbond said, adding that the class is even helping to run an online fundraising campaign to raise funds for production costs.

“Students are immersing themselves in what it means to create live theatre. They are taking multiple roles and responsibilities, both on and off stage,” Hosbond said. “It is challenging work, but the best thing a student can do is experience an education steeped in the fine arts. They will carry these experiences with them for life; because I have seen this happen over and over again in my career.”

Hosbond said his students hail from diverse backgrounds, and some are specializing in technical work, while others are working onstage. However, he said all of them had opportunities to experience both elements at some point during the course.

As to why they selected Zimmerman’s “Metamorphoses,” Hosbond said the reasons were many.

“For one, Zimmerman’s work is compartmentalized into multiple storylines. Therefore, we could split into single scenes and give multiple students chances to play multiple characters,” he said. “This made it easier to rehearse in our 48-minute class time. Secondly, Zimmerman is an amazing playwright and director. Thirdly, I saw this show several years ago in Iowa City and have never forgotten the beautiful experience it provided me.”

The Ledger will publish stand-alone rehearsal photos and student quotes later in the week.

For more information, contact Hosbond at kevin.hosbond@fairfieldsfurture.org. To donate, go to www.gofundme.com/fhs-metamorphoses-production-costs.

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