Fri. Apr 3rd, 2020

San Bernardino High School theater students take on life …

San Bernardino High School theater students take on life …

Most of us know the holiday season as a bright time of year – a time of joy.

But there is another side – it can also be a time of anxiety and depression.

In summer 2015, Kennedy LaRoy, a high school theater student from Chino Hills, ended his life. It was thought that bullying was a contributing factor. Kennedy was a student of Olivia Parker before she joined the San Bernardino High School theater department.

Parker was devastated by the news.

“When I received the news about Kennedy, I was broken,” she said. “His death left a hole in my heart that will never be repaired, and it was because of Kennedy that I finally decided that I HAD to do this show. I’m so glad to be given the opportunity to share it once again with my students and community, and hope that it helps to continue making a change in school violence and spreading thoughtfulness and kindness in our schools.”

Drama teacher Parker directs all the high school’s plays and appreciates the power of this play’s message.

The International Thespian Society, a division of the Educational Theater Association, announced the participation of San Bernardino High School’s Thespian Troupe 5334 in the production of “Bang Bang You’re Dead.”

The local high school theater department will rededicate “Bang Bang You’re Dead,” a play written by William Mastrosimone in 2015, focusing on the message to end school violence.

The 2019 production of the play will be dedicated to Kennedy as well.

The musical production is a one-act play written to raise awareness of the roots of school violence, which, as Mastrosimone writes in the notes of his play, “are not always easily seen.”

Angie Fausto, house manager for the San Bernardino High School theater department, said, “Our program hopes to make these problems apparent to as many people as we can, tackle these issues head-on and work toward eliminating these toxic situations entirely.”

Angie added that the department does one production in the fall/winter and one in spring/summer.“Because fall and winter is the darker season, it makes more sense to produce the play at that time,” she said.

“The actors range from freshmen to seniors and are good representatives of different age levels on campus,” Angie said.

The LeRoy family will not be coming to the production this time, Angie said, because they participated in the presentation five years ago.

The cast features Carlos Cuecuecha, Tommy Moreno, Ginny Jimenez, Marcell Gibson, Branden Rhodes, Chloe Obershaw, Aaliyah Almeida, Jose Medina, Matthew Perez, Elizabeth Carrillo, Cynthia Ramirez, Gerry Ambriz, and Jade Thomas.

Stage manager is Brianna Virgen. The run crew includes Angie Ramirez, Angel Salgado, Belinda Hernandez, Emily Esparza, Fernando Bucio, Ingrid Carter, Jannah Parafino, Makayla Mariona and Mykayla Harralde.

The theater department is pairing up with anti-bullying organizations, such as PACER, to make the issues more transparent and create an open dialogue, according to Angie.

The production, which opened Thursday night, Dec. 12, continues at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at San Bernardino High School, 1850 N. E St.

Tickets are $5 pre-sale; $7 at the door.

Michel Nolan appears Fridays. Reach her at michelnolan77@gmail.com.

Published at Thu, 12 Dec 2019 07:45:00 +0000

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