In February our 15 Team Hamlin thespians did us proud. Competing with almost 300 students (Grades 6-8) from 18 different Middle Schools from all over California at the Middle School Theater Festival in Pleasant Hill, California, our students earned 14 gold medals, 10 silver medals, and 4 bronze medals from the adjudicators for their monologues, scenes, musical solos, and musical duets.
The CETA Middle Stage Fest, now in its seventeenth year, is an exciting event for middle school drama students. At the festival, students perform monologues and scenes for panels of adjudicators and compete to earn bronze, silver and gold medals. In addition, while judges are tabulating the scores, students get to participate in high-energy theatre games. Unlike involvement in sports, it is rare for theatre students to have the opportunity to meet peers from other schools, share their passion, showcase their talent, and learn from one another. This festival brings together hundreds of students to do just that. All participating students qualify to attend CA YOUTH IN THEATRE DAY, where they meet and perform with other award-winning students from throughout the state.
Watch an award-winning monologue by Kennedy here:
To learn more, please visit: http://cetoweb.org/ceta/ceta-middle-stage-fest/
On December 6, Hamlin girls from grade 7 visited the recently renovated Curran Theatre to watch the musical Bright Star. Students absolutely loved the performance and will have an opportunity to discuss both the story and narrative structure of the play in their English classes.
Directed by Tony® winner Walter Bobbie and inspired by a real event, this “downright wonderful” (Newsday) original musical tells a sweeping tale of love and redemption set against the rich backdrop of the American South in the 1920s and ‘40s. The story unfolds as a rich tapestry of deep emotion, beautiful melodies and powerfully moving performances. An uplifting theatrical journey that holds you tight in its grasp, BRIGHT STAR is as refreshingly genuine as it is daringly hopeful.
Propelled by an ensemble of onstage musicians and dancers, the entire show is framed around Carmen Cusack’s Alice Murphy, who is “nuanced and forceful, effortlessly eloquent both as the younger Alice and as her older, sterner iteration.”(The Guardian) Literary editor Alice develops a relationship with a young soldier just home from World War II, awakening her longing for the child she once lost. Haunted by their unique connection, Alice sets out on a journey to understand her past—and what she finds has the power to transform both of their lives.
For more information about Bright Star at the Curran, please visit: https://sfcurran.com/shows/bright-star/
Over recent summers our highly talented theater teacher, Heidi Abbott, has been taking students to see Shakespeare plays onstage in Ashland, Oregon. For the past three years Hamlin has also been hosting visiting actors from the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
The Oregon Shakespeare Festival traces its roots back to the Chautauqua movement, which brought culture and entertainment to rural areas of the country in the late 19th century. Ashland’s first Chautauqua building—erected in 1893, mostly by townspeople—saw its first performance on July 5. In 1905, the building was enlarged to accommodate an audience of 1,500. Families traveled from all over Southern Oregon and Northern California to see such performers as John Phillip Sousa and William Jennings Bryan during the Ashland Chautauqua’s 10-day seasons.
The Oregon Shakespearean Festival was officially born on July 2, 1935 with a production of Twelfth Night. The Festival presented The Merchant of Venice on the 3rd and Twelfth Night again on the 4th. Reserved seats cost $1, with general admission of $.50 for adults and $.25 for children.