Helping to fund the play “True Colours” at Meaford Hall June 1. The students created the show themselves through Sandcastles play building process.
This s a wonderfully creative process which allows students to create characters, situations and dialogues that are relevant to them and choose the type of role that interests them most. It also allows all actors to have a moment in the spotlight, as our original plays do not tend to organize themselves into ‘leads’ or ‘chorus’. The Meaford group chose the theme of showing who you really are inside and we named our show, True Colours.
During the Winter, we created the play together, with each actor choosing a role and theme that was important to him/her. Woven into the storyline of the play were songs and dances on the theme prepared by the dance and Musical Theatre classes. The end result was a positive, uplifting story about young people finding the courage to share their ‘True Colours’. We received rave reviews from parents who attended the show, as it really is the sort of show that is meaningful and in which their children can shine.
Like the stories they created, many of our students found the courage as performers to share what was inside them. Although some of the performers were young people who had participated in Sandcastle productions in the past, many young people were participating for the first time. We saw young people start the classes who were quite shy and tentative but through the play building and rehearsal process, were able to come out of their shell and present a story of their creation in front of hundreds of people. I was quite amazed at some of our returning students to see young people who entered our programs a few years ago absolutely blossom as performers and as leaders in the creative process.
One of the important aspects of theatre is that it is something you share with others. Attending live theatre allows young people to develop greater empathy and many in the audience who see their peers on stage will realize that they too can do something that requires that level of courage.
With the generous donation by the Meaford Hall Foundation we were able to offer tickets to the show at a substantially reduced rate. This allowed students from GBCS and SVE to come see their friends and classmates on stage, when they would not otherwise have been able to afford to. We were also able to reduce the cost of our evening show to less than half our usual ticket price. This made it possible for a greater number of friends and family to enjoy the show and celebrate the success of our young performers.
In addition to the True Colours show, several of our Sandcastle Theatre students participated in the Kiwanis Music Festival in Speech and Drama and Musical Theatre. Two of our Meaford students, Mira Woodhouse and Lily Todds, were very successful in the festival and were invited to participate at the Provincial level.
Our mandate at Sandcastle Theatre is to make theatre and the arts more accessible to young people and their families. We recognize that in Grey County, one of the barriers to accessibility is affordability. We greatly appreciate all the support that the Meaford Hall Foundation has given us in providing scholarships for students who can not otherwise afford to participate. This allows our Meaford program to be one that is truly accessible to all young people. We love performing at Meaford Hall. Susan Lake is absolutely wonderful to work with and is extremely well organized and the box office staff and ushers are all incredibly warm and welcoming. Of course, the facilities at Meaford Hall are also incredible and performers and audiences love to participate or attend shows in such a beautiful and well equipped venue. It would not be possible for us to continue to offer our students the opportunity to perform in a venue such as Meaford Hall without the support from the Meaford Hall Foundation.
Thank you from all of us at Sandcastle Theatre for your ongoing support of our Meaford programs