WCS students take their bows

Middle and high school performers set for stage

By: Maria Allard | C&G Newspapers | Published January 27, 2016


WARREN/STERLING HEIGHTS — Some people were meant to be on stage performing before an audience.

Jacquelyn Wrubel, a seventh-grader in the Warren Consolidated Schools Middle School Visual and Performing Arts (MSVPA) program, is one of them.

When it comes to live theater, “You are there,” Wrubel said. “You are in the experience.”

Wrubel is among the 130 MSVPA students behind the creative process that put together the children’s show “A Moment in Time: A Wacky Historical Adventure,” to be performed the week of Feb. 1 for the third-graders of the district.

The MSVPA program is offered for half the day for seventh- and eighth-grade students at the Butcher Educational Center, 27500 Cosgrove Drive in Warren.

MSVPA is a program designed to provide students with a more thorough understanding of social studies by combining that curriculum with studies in the fine arts of music, performance and visual art. Students take a test to be admitted into the program.

The MSVPA students created the script based off of what they learned in their social studies classes. They also designed the show specifically for elementary-age students, according to performing arts teacher Jennifer McVicar, music teacher Vickilyn Withrow and visual arts teacher Heidi Kuhn.

Family members, friends and the general public are invited to see the one-hour show at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 3 at Butcher. Admission is free, and concessions will be available.

“A Moment in Time: A Wacky Historical Adventure” features dialogue, acting, music, dancing and singing. The show is about a fictional family of five that ventures on a journey visiting Africa, the United States and the Dinosaur Age.

Eighth-grader Nathan Cahilig plays the dad, Fred Stone, and eighth-grader Jordan Kue plays his son.

“It’s a lot of work, but when you start to put everything together, it gets easy,” Kue said.

Benjamin Franklin, Lewis and Clark, Cleopatra, and Julius Caesar are among the many historic figures brought to life in “A Moment in Time: A Wacky Historical Adventure.”

Wrubel is Sacagawea, eighth-grader Olivia Skierski is Martha Washington, and eighth-grader Katie Auberle portrays Betsy Ross.

“It really fits me,” Auberle said. “I sew also. I’m going to be a fashion designer.”

The students feel right at home in the program. Wrubel said the shy students have opened up more.

“Everyone is supportive,” she said. “It’s constructive criticism.”

“I feel we’re more comfortable to say something here because we’re like a family,” Auberle said.

“The eighth-graders get to know the seventh-graders and give them advice about what to expect next year,” Skierski said.

“They all come from different backgrounds. It’s really a close-knit group,” McVicar said. “I see so many benefits for these kids.”

Winterfest at WCSPA
The Warren Consolidated School of Performing Arts (WCSPA) will host Winterfest, a celebration of dance and musical theater, at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 5-6 at the Performing Arts Center, located inside Sterling Heights High School, 12901 15 Mile Road.

According to educators, the annual production is conceptualized and produced by the WCSPA students, and is designed for them to work from vision to creation in the most authentic way. Students design technical aspects of the performance from the lights, costumes and sound to choreography and dancing.

Winterfest will include a broad range of dance styles, including hip-hop, lyrical, modern styles, ballroom, Broadway-style tap and musical theater. The show will feature Broadway and contemporary tunes. The audience will be treated to solo features, duets and group performances.

Winterfest tickets cost $15 for adults and $10 for students and senior citizens, and may be purchased by calling (586) 825-2525 or online at wcskids.net/wcspa.

WCSPA is an award-winning, nationally recognized program that specializes in all aspects of theater performance and production. All classes are offered as part of the regular high school curriculum and are open to students from all three district high schools. Students are also exposed to visiting professionals, guest faculty, university workshops, field trips, theater organizations and an abundance of scholarship opportunities.