It’s hard to believe that Unified Theater 2011, in its eighth season, could experience any “firsts”!
Yet, there were 2 nightly performances instead of the customary one show. The weekly practice schedule was disrupted by Storm Alfred. And … last, but not least, the sound system went “silent” right before Friday’s show.
Super Bowl VIII’s mantra was: “The show must go on … The show will go on,” and yes, indeed, the show, in all its glorious, energetic magic unfurled in a flurry of song and dance to totally enchant the full house audiences.
This year’s cast of 140 actors and stage crew members created a series of commercials to complement the Super Bowl theme. Bubblelester Crutches, D-A-Jing Cream, iTub, Sour Patch Kids, Klondike Bars, Help Line, iPad 3, Flying Pets, Sticky Stuff, Oven Hat, Blue Stench, and Doritos all were advertised in student-created skits led by student directors Adrianna Graham and Allison Volpe and student producers Callie Dannhauser and Sara Flynn.
is a popular group at . The students love being able to work with their friends, creating their own skits and having so much freedom to be themselves.
However, even a totally student created, directed and produced show needs some adult guidance. These duties are performed by Melissa Lotstein, sixth grade Sedgwick music teacher, and Denise Brezinski, a special needs paraprofessional.
Each year they face the daunting challenge of putting a show together in eight short weeks. Enlisted along the way is the support of many Sedgwick staff members. “It takes a village to put on this show,” exclaims Denise Brezinski. Heather Pelkey, Amy Tebecio, Renee Kleinmann, Tricia Hartunian, Jas Singh, Principal Benjamin Skaught, and JJ Jordan and his custodial staff all answered the call to action.
Unified Theater is a collaborative effort of special education and regular education students at Sedgwick Middle School. This successful middle school program is an offshoot of the Unified Theater program begun at Conard High School by former student Micaela Connery. The mission of Unified Theater is to create a theatrical production equally featuring the talents of individuals with and without special needs.
Melissa Lotstein feels Unified is a refreshing break in today’s high-pressured lifestyle. “I love that kids have the opportunity to explore creative outlets and take full ownership of a beautifully finished product. They work together to create a memorable theatrical experience,” she said.
Yes indeed – “We’re ALL in this TOGETHER!”
Unified Theater… showcasing the talents of special education and regular education students … discovering theatrical abilities … emphasizing ABILITY over DISABILITY, CREATIVITY over CONFORMITY and COLLABORATION over COMPETITION.
Unified Theater is a collaborative effort of special education and regular education students at Sedgwick Middle School under the adult supervision of Melissa Lotstein and Denise Brezinski. The performance is student created, directed and produced. The Sedgwick Unified Theater is an offshoot of the Unified Theater program begun at Conard High School by former student Micaela Connery. The mission of Unified Theater is to create a theatrical production equally featuring the talents of individuals with and without special needs.