Wildcats Take the Stage - Drama Hits the Road!

By Harmony Tahy
February 28, 2024

Calling all future stars! This year, the Whitman Middle School Theatre brought the magic of live performance directly to our feeder elementary schools: Ft. Belvoir Upper Elementary, Mount Vernon Woods Elementary, Riverside Elementary, Washington Mill Elementary, and Woodley Hills Elementary. Under the direction of the amazing Phoebe Dillard, our talented Wildcats not only put on a fantastic show at Whitman, but also embarked on a tour to inspire the next generation of theatre lovers!

More Than Just a Performance

Ms. Dillard explains, "I wanted to find a way to not only showcase our students' talent but also encourage younger students to explore the world of theatre." The chosen production, "Dear Edwina, Jr.," proved to be the perfect fit, captivating audiences with its heartwarming story and engaging musical numbers.

Lights, Camera, Action - Learning on Tour!

The FCPS Middle School Theatre Arts program promotes the development of Portrait of a Graduate attributes by encouraging students to become critical thinkers, creative problem solvers and effective communicators, and the touring performances of “Dear Edwina, Jr.” were no exception.Taking a show on the road wasn't easy. From adapting to different performance spaces to overcoming challenges like cast members being sick, our young actors displayed incredible teamwork, resilience, and problem-solving skills. As Ms. Dillard says, "The beauty of theatre is that it's live. It changes every time, forcing our actors to adapt and showcase their adaptability, communication, and collaboration." 

Inspiring the Next Generation

The impact of the tour was undeniable. Washington Mill Elementary Assistant Principal, Tara Pensiero, shared, "Seeing our former students follow their passions in theatre was truly heartwarming." And the message resonated with the young audience too! After the performances, many sixth graders expressed their newfound interest in joining the Whitman Theatre program. Seeing the performance was also an unconventional learning experience for our sixth graders, offering them valuable lessons in creativity, teamwork, and personal growth. Analyzing and discussing the show with peers and teachers afterward encouraged curiosity and broadened their understanding of storytelling, character development, and thematic elements.

A Round of Applause for Our Wildcats!

This innovative approach to theatre education demonstrates the dedication of Ms. Dillard and the FCPS Middle School Theatre Arts program. It's a testament to the power of the arts to not only entertain but also foster creativity, teamwork, and personal growth in young people. We are all incredibly proud of our Wildcats for their dedication, talent, and passion for theatre!