Bosco Theatre: A Great Experience
by Victor Curiel
Some of the qualities our school tries its best to instill in each of its students are those of leadership, empathy, teamwork, and compassion for others. It is the Salesians’ mission to make certain that all young men who pass through St. John Bosco leave with these lessons ingrained in their character.
Here at St. John Bosco, students are provided with various opportunities and pathways to learn and practice these skills. However, while some may argue that this is best accomplished in clubs such as youth ministry or ASB, there is nowhere that this is better exemplified than in St. John Bosco’s and St. Joseph’s theater departments.
I’ll be honest, when I first came to St. John Bosco 4 years ago, the last thing I expected to catch my interest was the theater program. I assumed that it would be either subpar or that it’s content just wouldn’t interest me, but after much consideration, I decided to find out for myself and auditioned for the 2017 spring musical.
What I ended up finding was not just an engaging extracurricular but a family, one that John Bosco himself would be proud of. I feel confident that this realization is not just something I alone experienced but rather that it’s an inherent quality of the Bosco-Josephs theater department.
“I would say acceptance and like uniqueness. Everyone gets to shine and everyone gets to show off their uniqueness and their personality or their characteristics and it’s not always about physicality like in sports,” said Bosco junior Joshua Dreyer.
There is something truly special about the program, anyone can tryout, anyone can join and they’ll be accepted regardless of what sport they previously played, their beliefs, or their grade level.
“Don’t be afraid at all because really everyone in theater is just accepting, that’s what I’ve seen at least. And it’s not only accepting, it’s like you’re encouraged to show your weird side,” said Dreyer.
“The journey you go through from auditioning for a show to putting it on and going through closing night is amazing, and when you go through that with a big group of people you bond with them. I think that’s pretty great,” said Veronica O’Connor, a current senior at St. Joseph’s.
Another appealing quality of theater is the level of comradeship it allows between St. John Bosco students and their female counterparts at St, Joseph’s. The program has prided itself for being part of two schools yet remaining one program for years, a fact that members from both school’s enjoy and support.
“I think it’s a great way to connect both the schools because it’s difficult with sports and stuff. You get to connect through the arts, which is a very wholesome way of connecting the two schools and you produce something in the end. So it’s not like fruitless interaction, you’re interacting for a purpose or for a goal. I think we could definitely use more programs like this,” said O’Connor.
“I think it’s actually pretty fun to work with the girls because opening that up to women as well is a really good way to find people that are like you,” said Bosco junior Ryan Jones.
Theater is accepting and it provides an opportunity to grow closer to our sisters at Joseph’s, but what does it do for students personally? Aside from the obvious public speaking skills, theater helps foster an environment where one can learn confidence and how to find empathy in others.
“I think that theater does help me a lot with confidence and I think that theater helps me a lot with my social skills because I feel that I’m never necessarily a bad person socially because theater has taught me that you can talk your way out of all things,” said Jones.
If you’re looking for an environment that will provide a challenge and a family, look no further than the Bosco-Joseph’s theater department. If you’re nervous about auditioning for roles or are unsure of whether it’s for you, don’t worry, it’s something all theater kids have gone through.
“I feel that theater is something that some people see as just a hobby, that’s not as high or as important as sports. But theater is something that’s just as challenging and if you want to do it, don’t be too scared about it but at the same time realize how challenging it can be and don’t scare yourself because of it,” said Jones.
Don’t be afraid to try out for the next play or musical. You may not get the position you want, there’s not always enough roles unfortunately, but tech and crew positions are always available and are just as important and appreciated as lead roles.
It all really comes down to this, if you’re interested in finding a high school family full of people who will happily support you and your quirks all while participating in engaging, challenging, yet appealing work, the Bosco-Joseph’s theater program might just be the answer. So why not give it a try?