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‘Dissecting the Material’: Students describe Berrier as ‘hands-on’, creator of ‘fun’

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Heather Berrier, biology teacher, teaches her Anatomy class about the tongue. Photo Credit: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Mrs. Heather Berrier, who has been teaching science classes at GC for 5 years, talked about what makes teaching science worth it. She said, “Every job can be stressful if you let it. That is why it is important to find things outside of your career that you enjoy and take a break. I have had several other jobs before coming to teaching and this job is by far the most rewarding. Working with you guys and guiding you in your science education is a career like none other.” 

Berrier mentioned her favorite part of being a science teacher. She said, “I absolutely love watching students learn, and with that, it is the growth I see from getting a new topic failing with some concepts, but then learning from that. Also when I have students say ‘Wow that’s so cool!’ When it’s looking at a hydra or when they understand exactly how oxygen is used in the body.” (A hydra is a genus of invertebrate freshwater animals.)

Samantha Torres, 12, discussed what her favorite thing about Anatomy with Berrier is. She said, “The atmosphere! She always makes class a fun place to be. Not only does she incorporate labs but we also do a lot of group work, which I appreciate.”

Laney Elliott, 10, talked about her favorite aspect about Human Body Systems (HBS) with Berrier. She said, “My favorite thing about Science with Mrs. Berrier is that she always knows how to keep it fun and she tells us stories of things that have happened to her and people she knows that relate to what we are learning.”

Berrier mentioned how she has handled teaching Biology II, Human Body Systems, and Anatomy during a pandemic. She said, “ ‘If you don’t bend like a willow you will break in the wind’. This is a saying I heard my entire life from my Great Aunt Bunny. And it was so true with the pandemic. I learned so much about how to teach with technology, google meets, Nearpods, video recordings, Flipgrids, things I have never used in the past but now I don’t know how I did without them.”

Elliott talked about what Berrier does to help her learn. She said, “Mrs. Berrier is very good at making lessons hands-on and working with us to make sure we understand the material.” Torres also discussed what Berrier does to help her learn. She said, “Mrs. Berrier is always a helping hand. She often reaches out to students individually when they need help. Berrier is very approachable when you have a question, or difficulty understanding a topic.”

Torres further commented on Berrier, “I have had science class with Mrs. Berrier almost every year of high school. On the first day of my freshman year I had Bio 2 with her fourth period. I was able to go the entire day under the radar…until her class. She broke me out of my shell. She was introducing herself and her family when I saw a familiar face on her ‘Welcome’ slideshow. I had Mr. Berrier for fourth grade English. In front of the whole class she said ‘Miss Torres I’ve heard a lot about you!’ It was helpful having a teacher that welcomed me so early in my high school career.” 

Elliott also had a memorable story: “While we were in first semester we were doing an eye dissection lab and it was always so funny because when it comes to different things that we dissect, Berrier is not afraid to stick her hand into whatever it is we are dissecting, and when we were doing the eye she just took part of it and turned it inside out.”

Berrier discussed the most memorable moment in her teaching career. She said, “The first time I received a thank you card from a previous student, it was an unprovoked thank you card (not on Teacher Appreciation Week) and it caught me off guard. They were thanking me for teaching and telling me I had made such a positive impact on their life when they were in my class. Sometimes you don’t really know the impact you have, and at that moment I was like ‘Wow’.”

Additionally, funny moments happen, too. “Working in the Science department you have to have a sense of humor, we laugh all the time,” Berrier said. “But to me in class it was actually last week. A student told me, ‘Mrs. Berrier I am worried about you’ and when I asked why he said ‘You repeated two jokes twice in class….that’s why we didn’t laugh the second time.’ I immediately started laughing and told him he needed to tell me when I had a grandma moment! Teaching the same class sometimes I know I will repeat myself but him calling me out on it was so funny!”

Elliott talked about what Berrier does to make HBS fun. She said, “Mrs. Berrier tells us stories and lets us do labs to better understand what we are learning.” As for Anatomy, Torres said, “Mrs. Berrier’s attitude makes science class fun! Every other day I’m in class, she walks in the room with a smile on her face. It is contagious.”

Torres mentioned what Berrier has taught her about in Anatomy this year. She said, “This year we have had depth in everything from directional terms, root words/prefixes/suffixes, to the respiratory system and even blood!” Elliott talked about what knowledge she has gained from Berrier in HBS. She said, “We have learned a lot of things this year including the urinary system, joints, and different parts of the kidney and nephron.”

Berrier discussed her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids. She said, “I love anything with microscopes. Especially in Bio 2 we get to look at living specimens. It is not something you usually get to experience. Looking at the diagrams is learning the structures but when you get to see them moving in real life, not just a video, it is a whole different experience!”

Elliott talked about what her least favorite thing about HBS with Berrier is. She said, “I honestly don’t have a least favorite thing about class with Mrs. Berrier. She is always so fun and personable.” As for Anatomy, Torres said, “Dissections are not my favorite thing to do in science class. Berrier does let us work [with] partners though, which is nice because most times I take notes while my partner does the actual dissection. Although they are interesting to look at, the smell is too much for me!” For her part, Berrier discussed her least favorite thing about being a Science teacher. She said, “I really cannot find anything. I go to work every single day loving what I do!”

Berrier discussed how she balances her work and home life. She said, “When I leave school I turn on the mom mode. I try not to look at my email or grade assignments when I am with my family. It is very important in life to not always be working. If I have to catch up on some grading I will do this after my kiddos go to bed.” She also mentioned what she does outside of teaching Science. She said, “I am a coach of soccer and volleyball with my town’s rec league. I have been coaching for about 10 years. And I have Zumba twice a week!”

Berrier talked about what she wants students to learn in Science class. She said, “That failing is NOT failure. Experiments go wrong…all…the…time. If the scientist said, ‘Well that didn’t work…moving on,’ we would not have the medications or technology we have today. Learn in life from the mistakes you made, do not let them define you.” She also mentioned how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “I really like group and partner work where they can talk through ideas and assignments. I also tell stories…a lot. I like to try and relate subjects that we learn in class to things that have happened, maybe not to me….but I know a lot of people with interesting lives!”

Torres talked about what she will remember the most about Berrier after she graduates this year. She said, “After I graduate I will remember Mrs. Berrier as one of the first teachers to introduce me to my future career. I plan on attending Indiana University majoring in Human Biology. Her class and attitude really inspired me to look into career paths in the science field. I plan to be a dental hygienist.” Elliott commented on what she is going to remember the most about Berrier. She said, “I will always remember that at the beginning of the year I was new and Berrier just welcomed me with open arms and made sure that I was comfortable and understanding what I was doing.”

Berrier concluded by commenting on what she wants kids to remember about her. She said, “I hope they remember that you can have fun in everything you do. I know Science is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I hope they enjoyed the time in my class.”

National Women’s Month Profile: Albion Fellows Bacon

Photo caption: Albion Fellows Bacon is referred to as Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper.

By Jeremiah Edwards

The Progressive Era, from the 1890s to the 1920s, was an era of intense social and political reform aimed at making progress towards a better society. During this era issues such as labor rights, women’s suffrage, economic reform, environmental protections, public housing reform, and the welfare of the poor were all addressed. Indiana had its own reformer, someone who wanted to better the spaces people lived in, a woman who would become Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper: Albion Fellows Bacon.

Bacon was an American reformer and writer. She’s largely remembered for her efforts to improve public housing standards. Bacon was very involved in tenement reform and was vital in the passage of legislation to improve housing conditions in Indiana in 1909, 1913, and 1917. 

 Bacon was born on April 8, 1865, in Evansville Indiana. She was the youngest daughter of Reverend Albion Fellows and Mary Fellows and a younger sister to writer Annie Fellows Johnston. 

After the passing of Bacon’s father a few weeks before her birth, Albion’s mother Mary returned to her hometown of McCutchanville, Indiana. Bacon would attribute her early life in a small, rural town as her motivation for her efforts to achieve urban reform. 

Bacon would go on to graduate from Evansville High School in 1883, she would then work for her sister, Annie Fellows Johnston, who would become a professional writer, as her secretary during her tour in Europe. 

On October 11, 1888, Bacon would marry Hillary Bacon, the owner of Woolworth’s shop in Evansville. The couple would have four children together. 

At the turn of the century, Bacon would become very concerned about the effects of industrialization and urbanization. Her main interest was improving living conditions in Evansville. Bacon then became active in her community; she volunteered as a “friendly visitor” for local charities. She helped organize a Flower Mission group, which donated and distributed flowers to poor working girls.  She formed an Anti-Tuberculosis League that would help with preventing the development of tuberculosis, and also a Working Girls’ Association, that helped young women that were working in factories and mills. The association would later affiliate itself with the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association) in Evansville. Bacon was also a part of the Monday Night Club, a group of influential individuals interested in charitable work, her focus being its housing committee. 

Bacon showed her dedication and determination to achieve her goals by attending every session of the Indiana General Assembly from 1909 and 1917 due to her agreement with the Indianapolis Commercial Club. The Indianapolis Commercial Club would sponsor her legislation if she attended sessions of the Indiana General Assembly. During her time attending these assemblies, Bacon would garnish support for her legislation from other groups.

Even after achieving her primary goal of establishing a state-wide  law, Bacon would continue working as a social welfare activist. In 1917 she became chair of the Child Welfare Committee, a part of the Women’s Section of the Indiana State Council of Defense. She would then work on the passage of school attendance laws and establish a juvenile probation system.

An organization was named in her honor, Albion Fellows Bacon Center, located in Evansville. The organization currently provides such things as residential and non-residential services, community outreach, primary abuse prevention, sexual assault help, legal advocacy, as well as children’s and crisis response programs.

Bacon would die of heart failure on December 10, 1933, at her home in Evansville. She is praised as a symbol of the housing reform movement and Evansville’s best known and most loved woman. 



Squishmallow review: Cute, cuddly collectibles

by Shelby Duncan/ Staff Writer

Photo Link:


Many kids are fascinated by a new collectible called “Squishmallows. ”So, I decided to write a review on them. First things first, you may be wondering what a squishmallow is. A squishmallow is a stuffed toy that comes in many unique colors, characters, and sizes. They have just about any animal you can think of in any color, or any character you may like. They are extremely soft and they have a very squishy texture.

Zozo-photo from website: https://www.gamestop.com/toys-games/stuffed-animals-plush/products/squishmallows-zozo-the-rainbow-bigfoot-16-in-plush/11179216.html

Squishmallows are used in many ways. Some are simply a young children’s toy, some are collected and displayed, and some are just to use as a pillow or a fun bedroom decoration! It’s however you’d like! I’d say many high schoolers collect them and use them to decorate. My color guard team and I like to collect them and share them with each other. 

There are also lots of different sizes and that can make a difference on how you use them. Squishmallows come in 3.5 inch (keychain), 5 inch, 7 inch, 8 inch, 11, inch, 12 inch, 13 inch, 16 inch, 20 inch, and 24 inch. Obviously if you get the small one it may be a keychain, but if you get the largest one you could use it as a big chair or pillow! So it all depends on the combinations you may pick. Although, they are discontinuing the 13 inch soon! 

Personally, I love squishmallows. There are so many and they are really fun to collect. Although, there is ONE downside to them. The price. Squishmallows definitely aren’t cheap. For one small 8 inch size, it can range from 12-18 dollars depending on where you buy it. Other sizes can go up to 50 dollars. You may ask “Is it worth it?”

Now, as an individual I think it is worth it. But, others may not think the same. Many people think stuffed animals are not fun, or just stupid. So it really just depends on the type of person you are. If you love to collect things and you love things that are soft and irreplaceable, then you might like these!

All in all, anyone can like squishmallows. No matter your age or hobbies, squishmallows can be a fun thing to have. Squishmallows are at just about every store, so if you want to check them out try finding them at your local pharmacy or supermarket. I hope you have fun “squishing!” 

Link to Photo:


‘The DNP league’: examining underwhelming end to nba regular season

by Drew C. Smith/Staff Writer

DNP is an abbreviation used in the National Basketball Association to indicate that the player it is listed with did not play in the game.

Photo Caption: Milwaukee Bucks superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo cheers from the bench. Antetokounmpo sat out Sunday’s game, along with the rest of Milwaukee’s starters, against the Cleveland Cavaliers, with the Bucks losing 133-115. DAVID DERMER/AP PHOTO

It was an anti-climatic final day in the National Basketball Association this past Sunday, despite the fifteen-game slate that took up the entire afternoon, including interesting match-ups between key playoff teams such as the Milwaukee Bucks and Cleveland Cavaliers, the Boston Celtics and Memphis Grizzlies, and the Chicago Bulls and Minnesota Timberwolves. But, the main story of the night ended up being the fact that most of these teams sat their best players and sold on the game. It relates to a much larger debate that surrounds the NBA about load-management (load-management, to clarify, is a recently coined term that essentially means “planned rest” that players often use to avoid back-to-backs and to keep them play-off ready) and star players missing games and “ruining the product.” To be fair to those who argue that, a night like Sunday is a perfect example of how load-management and sitting star players can ruin what would otherwise be an incredible end to the season; the Celtics and Grizzlies game was run on TNT, with the Grizzlies sitting their entire starting five (with exception to Ja Morant who is still recovering from an injury). 

This does not exactly represent the league in the best light to the casual viewer. But, to be fair to the teams and players who make the decision to sit out, the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs game that same Sunday night explains exactly why they choose to sit. In a meaningless game that would not affect seeding or play-in tournament contention, Luke Doncic (the Dallas Mavericks’ only all-star and an MVP candidate this year) played in the game and suffered a calf-strain that could likely put him out of the first round of the playoffs. Had he sat out, he likely would have avoided the injury and been well-rested and prepared for the Mavs’ first round matchup against the Utah Jazz. There has been much debate about whether to shorten the regular season or not for some time, with some suggesting shortening the season by ten or twelve games. 

Some have suggested much more radical changes to not only the regular season, but the playoffs. Daryl Morey, President of Basketball Operations for the Philadelphia 76ers, suggests shortening the regular season to fifty-eight games. “I like fifty-eight,” explained Morey on the Colin Cowherd Podcast, further dictating, “Every team plays every other team two times.” Morey has an even grander vision for the playoffs, stating, “Shorter is better. I would have it one-and-done. There’s a reason everyone tunes into every game at huge ratings in the NFL. It is literally one-and-done.” Compared to the current playoff system, that is quite a shift, and in my opinion, a shift in the wrong direction. Part of the appeal of the NBA playoffs is the seven-game series, which sees coaches and players making shifts over the course of the series and adapting to each other in a sort of chess match between the teams. 

I’m not sure shortening the season is a move in the right direction either, especially when it’s only by ten or twelve games. There are still going to be back-to-backs, there is still going to be load management, and there are still going to be nationally televised games where the all-stars are on the bench. It just happens. Teams value their superstars in the long-term much more than they value the ratings of a couple TNT or ESPN games, and I do not think they are wrong for doing so. It’s like a nice pair of all-white shoes: you only wear them occasionally, you don’t wear them when it’s muddy out, you don’t slip them on to go take out the trash, you constantly check if they have marks or stains, and you’re constantly worrying about them while you’re wearing them. Yes, it would be awesome if you could wear them all the time, but are they going to last that long if you do? Probably not.

It’s funny to think about. People look back at the careers of Penny Hardaway and Tracy McGrady and remark how tragic it was that their careers ended so quickly, and then turn around and call the players of today soft for sitting out of games or taking a long time to recover from injury. Hardaway played nearly every game of his career, playoffs included, before his knee blew out in the 1996-97 season. Maybe his career could have been lengthened had load management been a part of the league back then and had the Orlando Magic front office and medical staff been as protective over him as teams are over their superstars nowadays. Maybe it would have been the same, we don’t know. The point is the NBA has some of the most advanced and intelligent medical minds in the world, working constantly to maximize the league’s premier stars’ longevity, athleticism, and health. So, when they sit out a bunch of the starters on a nationally televised game, sometimes it’s just like those all-white shoes: it’s better to keep them in the box for mundane days so that you can wear them to special occasions for a long time. 

Spider-man: No Way Home Review: triple the trouble

by Kaydence Ham/Staff Writer


No Way Home picks up immediately after the end of Spider-Man: Far From Home. Spider-Man’s identity is revealed, which means nothing will ever be the same for Peter Parker (Tom Holland). No Way Home particularly impacts their whole friend group including MJ (Zendaya) and Ned (Jacob Batalon). MIT denies all three of them admission. Peter automatically jumps to the conclusion that it’s because of his identity and the roles his friends play in his little disasters and his role of the “ friendly neighborhood Spider-Man” 

Peter has a plan, which is my favorite part of the whole movie. Peter asks Dr. Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) to cast a spell. But Peter becomes very indecisive and messes up the whole spell, which creates the big issue for the whole movie. 

The special effects were also really great in the movie. Something I had never seen before was the cages in Dr. Strange’s lair. Once villains were trapped in them, they could not escape even though there was no door. The cage could sense their magic, though, as well as the fact that they were not fully human. Towards the end of the movie there’s this scene where the sky is ripping open showing a vibrant purple color, and Dr Strange casts this spell and one can see it go out to the sky, and the sky starts to seal shut again. The special effects on this scene were amazing. There were so many details, and it looked so real. 

So many superhero movies now have confronted what it means to be a superhero. But in No Way Home Peter is put in a position to basically try to save the men who tried to kill other multiverse versions of him, which is when Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire are brought into the new movie. Andrew Garfield played in The Amazing Spider-Man in 2012 and The Amazing Spider-Man 2 in 2014. Tobey Maguire played in Spider-Man 2 in 2004 and Spider-Man in 2002. I really enjoy the aspect of bringing in the two Spider-Man actors, and the fans really enjoyed it too. 

Peter Parker tries to save Octopus (Alfred Molina), Electro (Jamie Foxx), Green Goblin (Willem Dafoe), Sandman (Thomas Haden Church), and Lizard (Rhys Ifans) by taking away their bad aspects. When he brings this idea to Dr. Strange, Dr Strange disagrees and then they get into a fight in the folding multiverse which is a really cool aspect of the movie. When watching it, it was mesmerizing. There were many colors and shapes in it. The other two Peter Parkers are brought into the movie with a scene when MJ and Ned try to find their Peter, after a tragedy that he had to face. The Peters immediately go to Holland and comfort him and relate to him with things that are similar to what happened to him but in their universe. The other two Spider-Mans soon realize that the villains from their universe have come into Holland’s universe which are the villains Holland had been dealing with. 

I like the aspect of bringing back the villains from the old movies as well. Some people may say that they needed to do something more original. But this really was a great addition to the Spider-Man series. I’ve never seen a movie quite like it. No Way Home was an overall great movie; the director, Jon Watts, uses amazing effects for Dr. Strange’s powers. Watts even added some new powers into the movie for people who didn’t have them before. The idea of bringing all of the Spider-Men back was quite clever and added a lot of emotion into the movie for people who have been watching Spider-Man since the original versions. Although viewers might be sad to see them go, seeing them all on screen again, together, was an amazing experience. 

Profile: Students describe Voelz as “patient,” creator of “great conversations”

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, helps Chelsea Adair, 9, with her assignment in English 9. Photo Credit: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, has recently been voted Teacher of the Year for GCHS by her peers. Voelz, who has been teaching English for 8 years at GC, talked about what makes teaching worth all the stress, all the grading, planning, and overall time involved. She said, “It is worth it whenever I see a student feel accomplished and proud of his/her efforts.” 

Voelz mentioned several positive aspects of being an English teacher. She said, “I enjoy multiple aspects of it. I really enjoy forming relationships with teens and watching them mature socially, intellectually, and emotionally throughout high school. I also LOVE analyzing literature with students who discover new meaning and have those ‘Aha moments’!” 

Katlyn Garner, 11, discussed what her favorite thing about Film Literature with Voelz is. She said, “She is a good teacher; she’s really friendly. She really likes to talk about films and it’s nice to talk to her about that sort of stuff.” 

McKenzie Bell, 9, talked about her favorite aspect of English with Voelz. She said, “My favorite thing about Mrs. Voelz is how caring she is about her students’ education and our feelings. She also makes eye contact [with us] when explaining things which shows she’s genuinely communicating.”

Voelz mentioned how she has handled teaching English, Film Literature, and F111, a college composition class, during a pandemic. She said, “It has been extremely challenging. I have had to let some things go and allow myself the same ‘grace’ I give to others. On the flip side, I have discovered new teaching strategies and have added [them] to my ‘wheelhouse.’ “

Bell talked about what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “Something she does to help me learn is check in occasionally to make sure I’m on track.” Garner discussed what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “She’s very patient, she’s great at explaining things and creates good conversations.”

Voelz talked about what teachers or mentors that she follows on social media and why. She said, “I chuckle at this question because I am not one for using social media much. However, I do follow one English teacher, Laura Randazzo, on YouTube and Teachers Pay Teachers. She is a high school English teacher about my age who creates fabulous lessons for her students. She also makes some entertaining videos. She is my idol!” She also mentioned who the most influential teacher in her life was and why. She said, “The teacher who impacted me the most was my high school English teacher, Mrs. Barbara Taylor. She was my teacher during my freshman year as well as my senior year. She was tough, funny, and inspired a love for the classics. I was first exposed to classics such as The Iliad and The Odyssey as well as works by Shakespeare in her room.”

Garner further commented on Voelz, “I’ve only had her for a short period of time but she’s just a really good teacher.” Bell told a memorable story about Voelz: “I was struggling with my grades and she noticed so she called me up and talked to me about it and offered to help me which no other teacher has done before.” Voelz discussed memorable moments in her teaching career. She said, “There are so many; however, I am always moved when I receive a card or an email from a student, years after I have had him/her in class, to thank me for making a difference in his/her life.”

Bell talked about what Voelz does to make English class fun. She said, “Something she does to make class fun is letting us work with friends.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Like I said, she’s very passionate about films and talking about films and there are good conversations.”

Voelz discussed how she balances her work and home life. She said, “This is tough, as I haven’t fully achieved this balance. It is a juggling act, for sure. Like most teachers, I take a lot home with me. This includes grading, planning, and responding to emails. I go through phases where I am more ‘balanced’ than others. Currently, my husband and I are making an effort to exercise together and get to sleep before 11:00. It always helps to achieve balance when you have someone who provides encouragement and accountability.” She also mentioned what she does outside of teaching English. She said, “I try to exercise regularly and enjoy working out in the gym and outside. I walk, jog, do yoga, and swim. In addition, I spend a lot of time with my family. I have one daughter who lives at home and three other adult children who live in Indiana, whom I see often.”

Garner mentioned what Voelz has taught her about in Film Literature this Semester. She said, “Right now we’re watching a film that’s about history, which is really cool. We’ve watched a lot of different types of films and different styles of films.” Bell talked about what Voelz has taught her about in English 9 this Semester. She said, “She’s taught us about the story Romeo and Juliet and Greek mythology, my personal favorites.” Voelz discussed her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids. She said, “I really enjoy Socratic seminars. It is extremely uplifting to observe students lead and discuss issues they have independently noted in texts they read for class.”

Bell talked about what her least favorite thing about English with Voelz is. She said, “My least favorite thing is doing work on our own.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Most of the reading can be a little bit continuous and the notes can be a bit boring sometimes but there’s good conversations.” For her part, Voelz discussed her least favorite thing about being an English teacher. She said, “My least favorite part is the paperwork (email, etc.) I know it is important to communicate with others, but sometimes it seems to take over my life. Balancing email communication with grading, planning, and teaching is challenging.”

Voelz talked about what she wants students to learn in English class. She said, “My number one goal is for students to realize they are capable of achieving whatever they work to do.” She also mentioned how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “I typically find that their engagement is related to my enthusiasm. If I enjoy what I am reading or discussing, I usually find that my engagement is contagious. I also think engagement rises as the students have more ownership in the lesson.”

Garner talked about what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Probably just the classroom morale and how many movies we watched.” Bell commented on what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Something I will remember most is how much she cared [about us] and she is really good at teaching.” Voelz concluded by commenting on what she wants kids to remember about her. She said, “I hope that they remember that I care and that most people in life are willing to help you when you show effort.”

Profile: color guard coach positively impacts students

by Shelby Duncan/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Angie Mayhue, GC color guard coach, and the GC color guard staff celebrate receiving gold at the Winter Guard International competition.

GC color guard coach Angie Mayhue is one of the newest additions to the Greenfield-Central Color Guard, but she has already made a great impact on the students in the guard. Mayhue is very well-known for her talent and creativity in the activity and has been able to share that talent with the GC guard program. She seems extremely   dedicated to the activity and her students. So, how exactly is Mayhue so well known and so great at what she does?

Mayhue started color guard when she was 12 years old in her hometown, North Huntington Pennsylvania. After some convincing from her former directors, she auditioned for DCI (Drum Corp International), a group of individuals that audition for the best talent in guard or band, at the age of 17. She then marched Carolina Crown ‘14, ‘15, and ‘16, and Boston Crusaders ‘17 and ‘18. When she started DCI she became well known on Instagram for her creative choreography she would write.

 Photo Caption: Mayhue performs in her 2017 Pride of Cincinnati show “The Inevitable Direction of My Life.”

Later, she began teaching and writing for many teams, including Greenfield. She strives to always leave a positive impression on her students. Students notice that she is always bringing a great “vibe” or environment where she teaches. Current color guard captain Kylie Huffman, 11, said, “Angie has been able to influence my guard career in many ways. One that stands out to me would be that she has the ability to help me even on my hardest days.”  

You may ask, “How did Mayhue become a coach for GCCG?” When she moved to Greenfield 3 years ago she was supposed to teach Greenfield right away, but she ended up getting another job and the timing didn’t work out. She had been friends with Rico Santiago, the GC guard director, and he always asked her to come in and see how the guard was doing. So, during the 2018 guard year she decided to come in and help him out. It started out as her helping out her roommate, to now being the group she works with most consistently.

One of Mayhue’s favorite moments with GCCG happens to be preliminaries from last marching band season, Ramped Up. Mayhue said, “I was able to realize how much the group had really grown in that moment. Even though the team didn’t make the semi finals I was so proud of the show they had finished on.” She was really glad that they ended with a good show. 

Mayhue absolutely loves teaching. She said she really likes that she is able to influence so many people in the activity. She really enjoys watching her students grow each season, although sometimes teaching can be challenging. Every guard has different techniques and ways of teaching. Every student also learns differently. Mayhue said, “Learning these different ways can be difficult at times, but I always try to adapt and enjoy my students.” 

Mayhue always would like to make a great impact on her students. Mostly, Mayhue said, “I would want confidence to be the biggest thing to get out of the activity. One of the number one things I have learned over time is that the more comfortable you are with yourself, the better you do in front of an audience.” She said it took her a long time to understand the art of performing, but once you are able to find that inner confidence, not only does your performance enhance, but you can apply that to other aspects in life. 

Photo Caption: Mayhue in an Instagram photo.

What to Watch: Film Reviews for February

by Drew Smith and Mr. William McKenna

Have you ever experienced this? You open up one of the many streaming services you may have, and proceed to mindlessly scroll through all the movies and TV shows before selecting something you have already seen or exiting the app. If so, then this article is for you. Bill McKenna, Greenfield’s very own Radio/TV teacher, and I watched six films that are on popular streaming services, such as Amazon Prime and HBO Max. We do our best to give thorough and intelligent reviews to help inform readers on if these films that they may scroll past mindlessly are worth checking out. So, without further ado, here are six films we watched this February:

  1. Beautiful Boy (2018)

(Drew’s Review)

A film that follows the memoirs of David and Nicolas Sheff about Nicolas’ extreme 

struggles with drug addiction and the brutal cycle of rehabilitation and relapse. Steve Carell stars as David Sheff and delivers an excellent performance that really stands as the strongest part of the film. Everything from line delivery to body language is captured incredibly by Carell. His performance elevates the emotion of the film and, at times, elevates a script that can be lackluster. On this note, I think at times Timothée Chalamet is unable to make some of the more bewildering dialogue work and his performance can feel a little shoddy. But, on the whole, Chalamet gives a solid performance and really shines when bouncing off of Carell. The cinematography is simple but effective, capturing landscapes in the beautiful wide shots and finding interesting ways to use the space around the characters to say something. The soundtrack is, at moments, egregiously over-the-top and really hit or miss. When the music is good and befitting of the scene, it works really well, but when it’s bad, it is really bad. Overall, the film really is about a parent’s relationship to their child and the uniquely unconditional love that comes with that, no matter what that child becomes or what that child goes on to do, they’re still their child. The film, I believe, aptly conveys that. – 7/10

(McKenna’s Review)

Steve Carell and Timothee Chalamet star in a film directed by Felix Van Groningen . The true story is taken from two memoirs (BEAUTIFUL BOY: A FATHER’S JOURNEY THROUGH HIS SON’S ADDICTION and TWEAK : GROWING UP ON METHAMPHETAMINES) about a father who tries to pull his son back from the brink of the end due to very heavy drug addiction. The subject matter is a tough one to take in as it shows the decline of a terrific young man as he compromises all he is as a human being to the drugs that have consumed his very soul. The story is condensed and covers a lot of ground quickly. Films don’t have the luxury in telling the story slowly like a book. The characters are from an upwardly mobile family with the funds to pursue all the various treatments…each no more successful than the last. The film has all the usual drug addiction movie tropes but manages to stay engaging. The performances are really good all around with Chalamet great as the young man who was unable to see his own worth outside of the drugs that made him feel wanted. Carell is a bit too earnest as the father who will do anything to save his oldest child from his addictions. Ultimately the story breaks down to a father having hope in the face of hopelessness because the reality leaves few options. There is never a happy ending in a story of addiction… just the pursuit of a better day.

  1. The Lost City of Z (2016)

(McKenna’s Review)

The Lost City of Z is directed by James Gray and stars Charlie Hunnam and Robert Pattinson. The story is about Englishman Percy Fawcett who was a military man who made several excursions into the Amazon to find the lost city of Zed. The film follows the usual “man-obsessed” tropes as Percy gets further and further into the jungle with each exposition. The native people attack and Percy finds a way to befriend them. He learns more about himself as he ventures into the jungles of the Amazon. The film is well shot with spectacular cinematography that makes the jungle the best character in the film. At two hours and twenty-one minutes long, I found it very dull.  Percy Fawcett was a real person and the film kind of tries to make it a Laurence Of Arabia in the Amazon. The film has a grand vision but I just didn’t connect with it on the level necessary to care about the characters. I found myself much more interested in the people who were already living in the Amazon than the intruders from the “civilized” world. Tom Holland shows up as Percy’s son for the final act of the film. When he enters the jungle where danger lurks I couldn’t help but say to my TV, “Use your Spider-Sense!” That’s not fair but that’s what I thought as “Peter Parker” showed up in an early 20th Century English adventure film. Movies are not real and to make them compelling liberties are always taken with the truth. The conclusion of the film borders on fantasy. The real Percy Fawcett story is quite interesting but that’s not captured in this film. It’s worth your time to Google him and learn about his efforts to find something that most likely didn’t exist… not in the way he thought it might. Overall, the performances are fine and the direction is adequate. James Gray followed this film up with Ad Astra starring Brad Pitt and Tommy Lee Jones and it’s exceptional, but this film gets lost amongst the backdrop of the Amazon. If interested in a movie about an obsessed explorer looking for a lost city in South America, I highly recommend Aguirre, the Wrath of God directed by Werner Herzog. 

(Drew’s Review)

The Lost City of Z is a film that never falls short but never exceeds expectations. Based on the real life story of Percy Fawcett (a British explorer who goes searching for a lost, ancient civilization deep in Amazonia), the film is essentially about man’s obsession with myth and mystery and the need to conquer these fantasies of the unknown. But while I think the theme is a fairly basic but solid backbone for the film, the script suffocates it with unrelentingly bad dialogue and messy pacing. It is very hard to get invested in the characters and plot of the film when everyone is written like blocks of cardboard that just spit out incessant cliches. The actors do their best, I believe, to try and elevate the script, but the lead man Charlie Hunnam struggles immensely and his performance left a little to desire. Robert Pattinson gives a solid performance as Hunnam’s co-star in the role of Henry Costin, Percy Fawcett’s main companion on his explorations of Amazonia, and I think the majority of actors do their best. The cinematography is a highlight of the movie, capturing the Amazonian jungle in these colorful, gorgeous wide shots. The music is serviceable at worst and really engaging at its best. The film has a lot going for it, strong cinematography, solid music, good actors, but the unavoidable elephant in the room, the script, continues to rear its head and sink the quality of the film. – 6/10

  1. Rashomon (1950)

(Drew’s Review)

Rashomon is so much in such a short span of time. Only lasting a tight eighty-eight minutes, the film is able to capture so much without rushing anything. This Akira Kurosawa film is most remembered and most celebrated for its excellent bending of narrative structure and important questions about truth and morality. And it certainly lives up to its accolades, having some of the best direction I have ever seen from a film. Kurosawa is absolutely masterful with the camera in this picture, turning moments and exchanges that most directors would ignore into creative sequences that give insight into the characters and themes of the film. So many shots have so much cinematic language within them that it just makes your jaw drop. The performances all exceed expectations and give so much life and depth to these characters. The script is insanely effective and is able to build perfectly to the final moments of the film. The editing is lovely and fairly ahead of its time, of course it frequently uses the “wipe” transition. Overall, Rashomon has much more to say than just thoughts about morality and truth. It also has subtle commentary on how audiences trivialize horror and evil for their own enjoyment and commentary on misogynist culture in Japan. The film leaves it to you to come to your own conclusion of the events of the film. The real horror is that after being given four versions of the same murder and sexual assault, you are still left inconclusive on what exactly happened. – 9/10

(McKenna’s Review)

This is where you start when dealing with real greatness. Rashomon is such an influential film that it basically created the Oscar for the Best International Film category. The film is so influential that it created the “Rashomon effect,” which refers to when different people have very different perspectives of the same event. This plot device has been used over and over…especially on TV. The film poses the question…what is truth? Every person tells their story…the basics are the same…but the details make it different. The nature of truth is not so easily defined. Directed by the great master Akira Kurosawa, whose influence is so great that it would be impossible to trace everybody who has been touched by what he created for cinema. Let’s just say there would be no Star Wars or any number of Spielberg films without him. The film is magnificently shot in black and white with breathtaking cinematography and style. The film has some of the first uses of handheld camera shots, which enhances the action sequences and creates a feeling of dread. There is great beauty followed by great fear and horror. The script is as tight as a drum and comes across like an epic poem. With a running time of just ninety minutes, the film gets right into the raw emotion of the story. The acting is fantastic with each actor bringing depth and emotion to the characters they play. The story revolves around a murder of a samurai and an assault on his wife. Multiple people tell their version of what happened and each has key differences that call into question what is actually the truth. The conclusion is the same…the samurai has been murdered but the “why” and “how” is called into question. Ultimately the truth comes out, but it is much different than the stories being told by the other characters…the outcome is no less heartbreaking regardless of which story is believed. There is a reason this film is considered one of the best ever made…because it simply is one of the best ever made ….and that is the “TRUTH.”

  1. Mon Oncle (1958)

(McKenna’s Review)

Mon Oncle directed by Jacques Tati is an amazing film as it is a throwback to the works of Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton, while influencing the future of The Pink Panther films, Mr. Bean, the works of Wes Anderson, and even the Oscar winning film Parasite. The film is a visual poem about conformity and people’s desire to keep up appearances in the modern world. The film introduces us to the character of Monsieur Hulot, a man happy with his place in the world but his relatives want him to embrace the modern sterile world in which they live. Using very little dialogue, Monsieur Hulot goes from scene to scene experiencing the absurdity of “modern conveniences.” Much like Chaplin in Modern Times, Monsieur Hulot gets tangled up in the machinery. All of this is done with ever-increasing physical and visual comedy bits that fit together like LEGOs to create an entire narrative, much like a Buster Keaton film. Monsieur Hulot has his nephew along for much of the antics as he is as childlike as his young companion. It’s through the innocence of the two characters that the nonsense of social status is exposed. Monsieur Hulot is the predecessor to Inspector Clouseau with his stumbling into one absurdity after another. The minimal use of dialogue and subtle visual comedy certainly influenced Rowan Atkinson in his various Mr. Bean T.V. shows and films. At first glance it would appear that this is just an absurdist comedy from France, but it’s really much much more as it comments on the pressure to be a part of modern social norms. Just like today in the film Parasite, modernity takes as much as it gives as it forces people to compromise their humanity for technology and social status. The film has fantastic cinematography that punches up the differences between the modern technological world and the world of the past. The visual style is much like the films Wes Anderson makes today, as every structure serves a purpose in the scene. The music accentuates each scene setting the tone for the hilarity that takes place. The French love the comedy of Jerry Lewis for his comedic style that utilizes the visual over the verbal. The French are a master of this kind of storytelling as seen in many of the films of Roberto Benigni and other French film makers. The film links all the segments together using dogs. The dogs go about their lives with the freedom of not caring what world they live in…they are allowed to just be dogs and act like dogs. Even the domesticated dogs just act like themselves. You can put a stylish jacket on a Dachshund but it’s still a dog and will act like a dog. Unlike the humans who must conform to the ever-changing world. In the end our Monsieur Hulot is forced to take his place in the old “rat race,” which is a shame. Coming in at one hour and fifty-six minutes, the film unfolds like a tapestry of hilarity. The last scene is of the dogs running free and being happy dogs while the humans…well, the humans try to fit in when they really don’t want to…better to be a dog.

(Drew’s Review)

This film is unbelievably spectacular. It follows an uncle and a modern, suburban family in a slice-of-life type of story.  The precision with which this film is executed is ridiculous, from every shot, to every costume, to every performance. The cinematography is so wide and is framed excellently, it uses a lot of deep focus to get so much in one shot. The performances use so much of the actor, relying more on the way they move and their facial expressions to show the characters’ personalities. The costuming and set design elevate this film to another level, the modern suburban house that the family lives in is this ridiculously pretentious style with more attention paid to status and look rather than functionality. They contrast this with the uncle, who lives in a town away from his sister and nephew, which while the town is crowded and noisy, it serves much better as an actual place to live. The film utilizes music in a really neat way too, in the suburban house there is no music, it’s just silence. But, in the town, it is full of lively music. Overall, the film is really a comedy about childhood and adulthood, and enjoying life for what it is rather than trying to make it what it isn’t. – 10/10

  1. Le Samouraï (1967)

(Drew’s Review)

This French film by director Jean-Pierre Melville is one of the quietest and most purely visual films I’ve ever seen. Following an insanely ritualistic assassin as he carries out a hit on a club owner that goes awry once the club’s pianist spots him on his way out, this was a hugely influential film during the era of French New Wave cinema. The camerawork is so fluid and dynamic, capturing scenes of planting a listening device or a police chase in the French metro system in these intricate, winding ways. There is this really neat, synth-heavy soundtrack that enhances the scenes with a minimalistic, tense rhythm. The performances, especially from Alain Delon and François Périer, are understated but work so effectively. The film falls short at moments with its winding pace and utter silence leading to times where it is easy to zone out. But, for the most part, the film is a simple joy to watch. The influence this film has on the crime-drama genre is immense. The film is so quiet and utilizes the camera to tell the story which is so refreshing. A very unique movie that is a must watch. – 8/10

(McKenna’s Review)

Le Samouraï is a French neo-noir film directed by Jean-Pierre Melville. The plot revolves around a hired killer who makes a mistake by having several witnesses see him at the scene of his crime. The film plays as a game of cat and mouse, as the killer evades the police as they close in little by little to the final conclusion. Will he escape justice? Though the film has all the usual tropes of the hired killer films, with the steely-faced,  calm hitman who is ever so professional in his work, the film still manages to rise above with stylish directing and a clever script. The police line up scene is particularly good and made me think Bryan Singer borrowed heavily from it for The Usual Suspects. Great cinematography and music choices help set the mood as the protagonist Jef Costello, played by Alain Delon, manages to stay three steps ahead of the persistent police commissioner. Delon sells every scene with minimalist dialogue, using just his face and body language to inform the scene. Very stylishly dressed in a trench coat and fedora, he is quite the handsome killer that makes the audience wonder if he just might beat the wrap. Assassin movies are not a genre I ever cared much about, though there have been some great ones like the Jim Jarmusch film Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai. Most assassin films are just noisy shoot ‘em ups with no logic. Le Samouraï is so much better than the modern hitman films. The film exists on its own terms just like the character Jef Costello who, even in the face of the police closing in on him, never yields to expectations and does it his way. 

  1. The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)

(McKenna’s Review)

What I know about French musicals is less than nothing, but I really enjoyed The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, directed by Jacques Demy. The film stars Catherine Deneuve and Nino Castelnuovo as young lovers who get split apart by war and societal expectations, a common love story theme that’s elevated by the music and setting of the film. Though the film is in French, I found it easy to follow the musical numbers using the melodies and the subtitles. The film unfolds like a painting, using bold colors in the production design that makes each scene explode with color and mood. No color tone seems out of place, be it in the umbrella shop or the auto garage. The bold vivid colors draw out the beauty of each character. Catherine Deneuve is the standout as she is magnificent as the young woman who has to watch as her true love is forced to walk away. She has to go from a young girl in love to a woman who has to make tough choices for herself and her young child. She has to do all that while singing at the same time. This was early in her storied career. She is still working in films today 58 years after this film came out. This is the film that put her on the road to stardom. If she is in it, it’s worth watching. The film takes place in 1957 and spans 5 years. The production features stunning costume design that greatly enhances the overall aesthetic of the film. The film comes in at a very tight ninety-one minutes, not wasting any time getting to the heart of the story. The music is beautiful and it’s no wonder the film was a huge hit. It’s a continuous score with every line of dialogue being delivered in song. The melody stayed with me long after the film had ended. The film ends with the two former lovers reunited at a gas station at Christmas in the snow. They have both made choices but can’t help but wonder what could have been, as they go their separate ways as the snow falls. That’s what I call a musical ending.

(Drew’s Review)

A romantic tragedy musical directed by legendary French New Wave director Jacques Demy, this film was absolutely spectacular. Following a young couple in the French city of Cherbourg as they are separated due to the Algerian War, this musical surprised me in a lot of ways. It has one of my favorite opening credit sequences I’ve ever seen, so fun and creative and sets the tone for the coming magnificence. The film has some of the best set and costume design I’ve ever seen, which color plays a large part in, designating certain shades and tones to characters to represent something about them and their emotions. The film is so purposefully detailed and it extracts so much out of each aspect of the picture. It really is a non-stop musical, with each scene being its own song, with certain songs referencing back and using certain passages from earlier in the movie. The cinematography and camerawork are of course fantastic, they utilize a lot of these extremely well-done long takes that capture so much in one shot. The performances from everyone are really incredible and they all bring out so much character despite singing the entire time. The script at times features some flat and horrid dialogue, which can hold back the film from being on another stratosphere. Overall, the film is about codependency and young love, and how sometimes you don’t end up with the people you thought you were meant for because life gets in the way. – 8/10

So, in all, it was a joy to watch these six films. Ranging from foreign classics to modern films that fall short, it was a neat collection of movies to watch. So hopefully this gives you readers an idea for what to check out on your streaming services. Maybe some of these films caught your attention or maybe you have zero interest. But, regardless, when you are scrolling your streaming services and you feel like you are in an endless spiral, reference back to this article and check something out. 

Students gain valuable experience in workforce

by Tyler Young/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Gary Rincones, 11, works on his Algebra when he has unscheduled time.

Students can learn a lot with a part-time job: responsibility, decision making, and saving money they’ve earned. Here are some Greenfield- Central students who have shared what they’ve learned in their place of work.

Gary Rincones, 11, works for the Greenfield Parks Department. He said he helps take care of all the parks in Greenfield. Rincones shared his position at his job. “Right now at the age of 17 I am a seasonal worker, but since I can drive I have better benefits than most.” Rincones also discussed some of the things he does at work. “The main of my job is taking care of parks and locations in Greenfield. During all the seasons I work on keeping the parks clean and looking good. I mow the grass at either Brandywine or Riley Park. I also cut down trees before new projects are being built as we speak, I have worked on the grounds and use machines. I even work on lawn mowers when they are not working.”

Rincones talked about how his job affects his school work. “Since I don’t take half days I only work during breaks during the school year, but I do tend to help as much as I can.” Rincones shared when he started his job. “I started working in the summer of 2021 and I enjoy working there. I have met new people I consider great friends and I get to sit down with the mayor and talk about projects.” Rincones shared about life lessons that he’s learned while working. “My job has taught me that life isn’t easy and it’s a struggle having to work long hours everyday to receive a paycheck that will benefit your family. I learned that hard work does pay off as we do so many projects and it takes a very long time to complete them but in the end it all pays off. It has also taught me a lot of leadership skills.” Rincones said why he got a job. “I wanted to get a job because I wanted to support my family in ways apart from doing well in school and playing sports. I also wanted to know what it was like working as an adult so I could get the experience.” 

Rincones shared about why he chose where he works. “I was doing an Eagle Project here at Riley Park. I built the picnic tables around the parks but just being in the environment and really seeing the idea of helping and taking care of something really spoke out to me.” This is Rincones’ message to students looking for jobs. “When you are looking for a job many people look at the payroll, and trust me it’s important but don’t get yourself into something you don’t enjoy. No matter what you’re getting paid, find something you like to do.”

Caleb Means, 11, works at a restaurant called Marina 27. He said he is a wait assistant. Means shared the things he does at work. “The things I do for work is cleaning tables, changing the table cloths, filling the water, and helping the waiters with whatever they need.” Means talked about how his work affects his schooling. “My job doesn’t affect my school because I work in the summer.” Means also shared about how long he’s had this job. “I’ve been working at Marina 27 for about 2 years now.” He also talked about life lessons he’s learned at his job. “My job has taught me how to be patient with others and don’t say yes to everything.” Means also shared about what made him get this job. “My dad said I should start working there so he basically chose where I should work.” This is Means’ message to those looking for a job. “I would recommend that you just look for something that interests you as long as you are wanting to do it enough.” 

Jackson Roeger, 10, at CED Indianapolis and is a warehouse worker. Roeger shared what he does at his job. “I pull, put away, and label stock; unload and load shipments, backorders, ups shipments.” Roeger talked about the effects of school and his job. “It doesn’t affect my school work at all because I work during breaks.” Roeger also talked about how long he has had his job. “I have had my job for about a year now and plan on being there for a long time.” Roeger shared the life lessons his job taught him. “My job has taught me how to manage a schedule and has taught me what it is like to be an adult with responsibilities.” Roeger talked about what made him get a job. He said,  “My uncle and my own interest. I always wanted to work. I really enjoy working and working with my coworkers.”

Roeger revealed why he chose to work at CED Indianapolis. “I chose this place because my uncle works there and because of the work environment. I have no complaints about working there at all, everyone there is respectful and helpful.” Roeger finished off by giving advice to those who are seeking jobs. “I would recommend that you don’t get a job because of the money but because of the people around you. You don’t want to go to a job that you regret coming to everyday.”

It sounds like students are getting a lot from their jobs that they might not get from a classroom. These three students also had some great advice for those who are now able to find a job that would be helpful in the future.

Troupe 2961 places third at regionals with Anybody for Tea

by Kaydence Ham/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Ty Smith, 10, Leah Olin, 12, Charlotte Phillipy, 9, Jordan Kuker, 10, and Addy Martin, the old ladies in Anybody for Tea, talk to Detective Dennis O’Finn, played by Ashton Wilkison, 12, about the death of Elizabeth.

Greenfield Central’s Thespian Troupe 2961 put on a strong show once again at  regionals, which put them in third place and awarded them “Best Set Design.” Their third place at regionals got them to state. 

Creating a show for competition is harder than it seems. The cast and tech crew came together and worked hard for months to put together their competition piece Anybody For Tea.  

When Jordan Kuker, 10, who was a member of the cast was asked what the cast’s goals were when performing she said, “Our goals were mainly, get our set on and off quickly, do our acting fast but not too fast, and the most important goal of all. Make people laugh. The phrase ‘remember what’s funny’ will probably be ingrained into my brain until the end of time, but those three words are probably what helped me the most.” Some people also set personal goals for themselves like Audrey Roberts, 10. Roberts said, “My goals for this show were to give it my all and have fun. Acting is unpredictable in so many ways. You never know if the tea tray will refuse to go under the table or if you’ll accidentally drop a pencil during Regionals (and yes I know from experience).  With that unpredictability in mind, I knew I just needed to have three things done: all my lines memorized, have created a character that is more than just the lines, but has a motive for why she is who she is, and I needed to be prepared for the little things like dropping a pencil.” And Coy Walden,10, director said, “ Our goal is just to have everything run smoothly, and make the show enjoyable for not only our audience, but for the actors, too.”

Going through the competition process isn’t exactly a breeze either; at regionals they are scored on so many things including how long the play takes to put on, perform, and take down, how well they work together, how good their acting was, and how well the set was made. Before the cast puts on a performance they have things they like to do to prepare. Kuker says, “ For me personally, I have very very bad anxiety, so keeping myself calm is very very important to me. I do deep breathing which is good if you have a mic backstage before a show, I can stay pretty quiet and keep myself distracted. I also carry a fidget toy on me at all times, so before I go backstage I make sure I have time to fiddle with that. I also listen to music as I get my makeup on.”  Roberts said, “The best way for me to deal with before show jitters is to stay occupied. We, the actors, might run through the lines once before going on, but there’s so much wait time we find other things to do. Before state, we were playing games like hangman and “down by the banks!” Walden said, “We have many things we do right before a show. A lot of times we’ll sing and dance to music to just let our jitters go. We also make sure we know we’re all there for each other, we’re prepared, and that we’re a team.” 

Being in a club like Thespians brings memories and a second family. Walden said, “The best experience of the show being the director is definitely sitting in the audience and being able to watch everyone’s hard work pay off. The worst experience was probably performing it for the last time. It was bittersweet. We had all grown attached to this show, and were sad to see it go, but it was good to finally put an end to it once and for all.” 

Roberts said, “My favorite memory of the show was our first performance at the high school when I started backstage and could hear everyone onstage in character; it was so incredible to hear these old lady voices and the laughter of an engaged audience. Honestly, worst experiences fly away faster than you would think. At the end of a show, we’re all sad to see it go, so the bad moments are often forgotten in favor of all the fun times we had.” 

Kuker said, “I think my favorite experience would be getting dinner with my friends at the college campus and then going and seeing a very good show another school had put on. I remember laughing with my friends at lunch and watching that amazing show. The whole thing was truly an amazing experience which I think will change the way I act for the better. I don’t think there was anything that I really hated. I guess if I had to choose one thing it would be when we had trouble getting to the school during heavy snow. It was a little scary but our bus driver was very very skilled and nice.”