By NYMetroParents Staff

Dwight-Englewood School Fifth-Graders Perform Original Opera

May 12, 2014   |  Local News - Rockland County  


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Fifth-graders from the Dwight-Englewood School in Englewood, New Jersey, performed an original opera called "Ups and Downs...Back on our Feat" on May 1. The show was produced in partnership with the New York Metropolitan Opera Company.

dwight englewood school opera

Photo by Michael Rodenbush

For the 28th year in a row, Dwight-Englewood School fifth-grade students performed an original opera as part of the Creating Original Opera Program in partnership with the New York Metropolitan Opera Company. The D-E Above and Beyond Opera Company proudly presented its opera called, "Ups and Downs...Back on our Feat" on May 1 at 7:30pm in the D-E Klein Campus Center's Hajjar Auditorium.

The fifth-grade students produced the show by themselves, and every student in the fifth grade contributed to its production and performance. Students made the lights, designed the costumes and applied the makeup, wrote the script, designed the set, built and painted the set, composed the music, and of course, performed in the show.

dwight englewood school opera, fifth graders

Photo by Michael Rodenbush

Students also applied for and held several positions, including production manager, stage managers, historians, costume and makeup artists, and an Opera Public Relations Team which produced a media release and designed the opera company logo and performance playbill. Each fifth-grader applied for a job of his/her choice and interviewed for the position. The performance on May 1 was the result of eight months of hard work.

"This year's Grade 5 Opera at D-E School was about eight kids who go to the same school," said Daniel Boxer, a student on the Opera Public Relations Team. "When they learn that some of their classmates are going to the same vacation spots, they discover surprising things about what they are capable of. They learned that you never know what you can accomplish till you try. 'Accomplishment' was the theme of our opera."

Mary Heveran, in her nearly 30th year as the lead advisor for the Original Opera Program, said, “I love this year’s opera theme of ‘accomplishment’. Children learn so much about what they can accomplish through this process.”   

Lorna Milbauer, Opera Program advisor, added that, “Giving children the independence to express their original ideas is the most thrilling part of my job.”  

Grade 5 student members of the Opera Public Relations team concluded with the following statement: “It is extremely exciting to see how we put together this show entirely by ourselves [and then perform it], without any help from teachers or advisors.

 

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