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Posted: April 18, 2016

Mary Poppins coming to life

By Michaela Eckersley

For as long as I can remember, my grades have been important to me.

Kelsey Thompson in the background with Abby Lalach as Jane Banks in the foreground.
Kelsey Thompson in the background with Abby Lalach as Jane Banks in the foreground.

I had high expectations of myself, and I always made sure they were met. I never realized that there were other types of learning, except the kind that my teacher would feed to me in a classroom while I sat in a chair and listened. I never knew or realized that there was more, or any other way to learn. That it could just be about the experience and exposure to something different.

It wasn’t until I came to Mount Baker Secondary School this past fall and joined the theatre program that my eyes were yanked open and my brain was exposed to so much more.

You never understand how to work as a team until you complete an entire musicals’ worth of choreography in one shaky week, or how to have patience to coax the harmonies in a song out of the page and into your heart, and the sound of our feet stomping the floor in time to the beat. I have never experienced love and compassion as I have for this group of people that I spend every day with. The level of determination and focus in the drama room is incredible: a transformation occurs once the school shuts its doors and closes its windows. Suddenly all labels are gone, and we are simply what we came there to do: act and sing.

Cast members Laura Louw, Samuel Spencer, Tace Bradwell, Claudia Royo, Fabian Ernst and Luiza Bengtsson.
Cast members Laura Louw, Samuel Spencer, Tace Bradwell, Claudia Royo, Fabian Ernst and Luiza Bengtsson.

Before this production of Mary Poppins, I had never ever seen a group of people come together like this for one common goal: the love of the music. Coming up from middle school this past fall, I was absolutely terrified about what high school would be like. Fortunately for me, though, I found a home right away in the drama room. But, like they all say, it isn’t a room that makes a house a home, it’s the people you share it with.

Not only has this program given me a sense of belonging, it has taught me responsibility, determination, and courage. It wasn’t until I joined Wild Theatre that I discovered that some of the most important things we need to learn can’t be taught in a classroom.

Come and see what we’ve been up to! Mary Poppins plays at the Key City Theatre May 5-7 at 7:30 p.m. and May 9 at 2:30 p.m.

Tickets are available at the Key City Theatre Box Office, by calling (250) 426-7006 or by visiting the Key City Theatre website.

Lead image: Left to right: Kelsey Thompson, Cameron Sperling, Kelsey Ackert, Claudia Royo, Jan Janssen, Luiza Bengtsson, and author Michaela Eckersley. Photos submitted


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