UCDSB to host district drama festival
The Upper Canada District School Board has been selected to host the 2017 Sears Seaway District Drama Festival from April 4-8 at St. Lawrence Secondary School (SLSS) in Cornwall.
This yearly event brings together high school drama teams from across Stormont, Dundas, Glengarry, and Prescott-Russell to showcase their skills and abilities while making lifelong connections with like-minded students across the region.
SLSS teacher and Co-convener Al Merizzi notes that the festival allows students to participate in a professionally adjudicated event, while developing skills useful in work and in life. Students perform one-act plays up to 50 minutes long, with three different plays featured each night. Plays are presented before a public audience, and then professionally adjudicated. Certificates of merit and awards of excellence are conferred on deserving performers and those working behind the scenes. Top teams move on to the east regional event and may later qualify for the Sears Ontario Provincial Showcase.
While performing at the event, students develop many important skills and gain valuable life experience. Students working behind the scenes learn how to build sets in shop class, or work in support roles including light and sound technician, make-up artist and stage crew member.
“It really touches on everything,” said Merizzi. “It helps students build communication skills and self-confidence, inspires motivation, and instills leadership and cooperation skills.”
Participating students can also apply for $15,000 worth of bursaries, including four Ken and Ann Watts Memorial Foundation Scholarships worth $3,000 each and six $500 bursaries.
The district festival is being co-convened by Mr. Merizzi and Cornwall Collegiate and Vocational School (CCVS) teacher Adrian Black.