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Drama teams connect to share interests, knowledge

Written on March 12th, 2008

Two schools take part in play exchange 

Drama teams from two Christian high schools in Ontario are meeting this spring to share what they’re learning from the team building activities Melbourne they’ve been conducting, and what they love about the world of playacting. Students involved in the spring drama productions at Toronto District Christian High School (TDChristian) and London District Christian Secondary School (LDCSS) are taking part in a play exchange.

LDCSS drama teacher Christine Boer says the exchange allows the students to get to know more people with similar interests.

It also provides an opportunity for the teams to learn from each other.

In February the LDCSS team visited TDChristian to see its production of the story of Anne Frank.

“After the show we had a question-and-answer period with the cast,” says Boer. “So we got to talk about their set, the symbolism behind it, as well as some of the issues of the production.”

The two drama teams also spent some time doing other drama-related activities.

The TDChristian team will be coming to LDCSS to see its rendition of the comedy Happy Daze, which will be followed by a meeting of the cast for in-depth discussion. The exchange includes an overnight stay.

Boer says the exchange has similarities to the Christian drama festival, which takes place at Redeemer University College. That event had an overnight component at one point.

“The students really missed the overnight experience and getting to meet other students interested in the same things,” she says, adding it was a student who suggested the teams do the play exchange.

Both TDChristian and LDCSS are recognized for having strong dramatic arts programs.

Richard Peters, who teaches the program at the Toronto school, has a passion for equipping, encouraging and challenging actors who have a Christian worldview. He believes God is calling actors to make a difference in and through the dramatic arts.

Peters has introduced the unique activity of having all Grade 9 drama students prepare, practice and perform a rant at Toronto’s Speaker’s Corner, a booth at the corner of Queen Street West and John Street. For about $2 anyone can have a say in front of a camera which may or may not be aired on television.

The activity at Speaker’s Corner is followed by a dinner and show so students can get a real-life taste of what acting is all about.

“As an actor myself I understand how important it is to see theatre to really get it,” says Peters, who also runs Broken Open Theatre, a company specializing in training for Christian actors.