Rockaway Theatre Company Kids Strut Their Stuff On Stage
Saturday night, April 22, and Sunday afternoon, April 23, young thespians from The Rockaway Theatre Company's Children's and Teen's Theatre Workshops performed before packed houses in the Post Theater at Fort Tilden. The Children's Workshop, which is made up of children between the ages of 7 and 12, performed the classic tale of Stuart Little, "A mild-mannered mouse trying to survive in a real people's world." The cast consisted of Kate Calciano, Ryan D'Emic, Celine Ebert, Morgan Flemming, Cameron King, Lalace King, Sydney Lyncook, Catherine Muldoon, Bianca Nagel, Anna Pastina, Indigo Signoretti, Casey Stabiner, Sarah Stokes, Joseph Sullivan, Lara Thompson, Mackenzie Thompson, Christoper Tsatsis, Nicholas Tsatsis, Nikole Wolf, and Sophia Zweifler.
The RTC's Teen Workshop, which is made up teenagers (thirteen and up), performed the slightly more bizarre and very funny story of The Hospital. This play is set at the fictional Bedside Manor Hospital where, "A laugh a day keeps the doctors in pay." Cast-members Johanna Araisin, Emily Arikian, Nicholas Compagnione, Laura Cryan, Amanda Ebert, Alissa Elfant, Brandon Fox, Josh Frankel, Sarah Gewitz, Kate Hall, Kevin Logar, Samantha Mackoff, Hannah McHale, Erika Morales, Josh Nelson, Jessica Parker, Faye Peithman, Steven Peithman, Julianna Sebade, Liz Vivino, Judith Wanderer, and Brenda Wierzbowski had the audience in stitches while stitching the various injuries of the unlucky patients in The Hospital.
Both groups of children have been learning the ins and outs of dramatization, dialogue, improvisation and stage performance over the past 30 weeks in Saturday morning workshop classes given by talented and experienced instructors, Peggy Page and Peggy Vivino. The youngsters displayed such promise and enjoyed being on stage so much that several members of the Teen Workshop will be appearing in the next Rockaway Theatre legitimate production, The Women, which opens this Friday night, May 5, at the Post Theatre. Director Peggy Page, along with co-director, Michael Wotypka, and was responsible for casting The Women said, "I was delighted to be able to cast so many of my students from the workshop in this play. They have worked hard and come a long way. Those who have been chosen for The Women are really doing a phenomenal job." Peggy Vivino added, "We hope to utilize students from our Children's Workshop next season. Annie and Oliver are among the musicals being discussed for the 2007 season. We prefer to select to cast from the children who have taken our workshop, because we know they have the necessary dramatic training."
The RTC's Children/Teen Theatre Workshop begins its third season in the fall. Anyone interested in being a part of the program should call the RTC hotline at (718) 850-2450 or watch the Wave for information on the program's start-up after Labor Day.