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Nov 132014
 

Screen Shot 2014-11-11 at 8.54.42 PMThe Amity Creative Theater (ACT) at Amity High School is proud to announce that tickets sales have begun for their fall production of New York By David Rimmer.  The show dates are Dec. 5 and 6 at 8 p.m.  General admission seats for $10 can be purchased through their website at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com

The plays author David Rimmer, was a Pulitzer Prize finalist for his play Album that opened to great success off-Broadway starring film star Kevin Bacon. 

New York was originally written to raise funds for volunteer psychiatrists dedicated to helping the overwhelming number of patients psychologically affected by 9/11. Depicting the reactions of 15 individuals to the events of that day, the characters all speak to a central psychiatrist. The play has been performed at theaters throughout New York, the United States and internationally to great acclaim. 

The New York Resident called the play “brilliantly written… a thought-provoking event avoiding the sentimental and capturing realistic portraits of how we’re all dealing with it… a touching exploration of the effects of September 11 on the lives of average New Yorkers”. 

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Amity students and Judy Primavera visiting the 9/11 Memorial in New York.

The Amity production is directed by theater teacher Rob Kennedy.  Kennedy said he chose this production for his student actors because, “The oldest of the Amity Students were only four years old when the events of 9/11 occurred and the youngest ones were barely a year old.  I think it’s an important learning opportunity for our school to talk about that time in our countries history and how it changed all of us.”

The cast and crew recently visited the 9/11 Memorial and Museum on a trip sponsored by the Jamie Hulley Arts Foundation to get some perspective.  The students had a special guided tour of the museum and spent time with New York’s playwright David Rimmer.  

After the trip, Amity senior Ethan Smith who is playing a fireman named Tom O’Neil said, “It was an incredible experience.  It really put a human face on the part I am playing.  And meeting the author of the play was great too.  We got to ask him questions about the play and the characters we are playing.”  The cast and crew have been working on the show since early September and have been busy rehearsing and creating the technical elements of the play.  

The play also will be shown during school hours to the entire Amity High School student body and the eighth grade classes from the two middle schools, as part of the Spartan Seminar program.  The students will view the play and then have discussions related to the topic afterward. 

Amity Principal Charles Britton said, “The fall play gives us the opportunity to showcase the talent of our students, build a little school spirit and camaraderie, and capitalize on the “teachable moment” offered by the themes of the production. Our students were very young in 2001; we owe it to our nation to keep the memory of 9/11 alive”.  

The Cast Includes Clara Gamsu, Addie Robbins, Ethan Smith, Kahari Blue, Yulia Faryna, Ryan Chizmadia, Alex Cavanagh, Kevin Durkee, Clara Stirling, George Grotheer, Emily Kilian, David Linet, Chris Cassella and Caroline Burkhart.  The crew is led by Stage managers Megan Foley, Sage Saffran and Jacob Okolo.  

For Information and tickets go to the ACT website at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com or call the box office at 203-392-2019.  The ACT production has been made possible by a grant from the Jamie Hulley Arts Foundation.  

Apr 072014
 

IMG_5582Watch this short VIDEO, then visit the Ticket Site and get your tickets for Amity’s production of “In The Heights.”

The show opened to a sold out crowd Friday, April 4. There are 5 performances April 4, 5, 10, 11, and 12. Tickets are just $17. If you’ve never seen an Amity High School Musical, let this one be your first. You won’t regret it.

As of 9 a.m., Monday, April 7, only  1  seat remains for the Thursday, April 10 show;  SOLD OUT April 11 and closing night April 12.

Originally Published on: Apr 1, 2014 @ 21:58

Mar 312014
 

The cast during a rehearsal in late January.

The cast during a rehearsal in late January.

The Amity spring musical “In The Heights” will open on Friday night and tickets for the five performances are selling quickly.

A check of the ticket website shows the following:

Opening night – 17 seats remain

Saturday, April 5, 11 seats available

Thursday, April 10, many seats in the side rear sections

Friday, April 11, 11 seats remaining

Saturday, April 12, about 30 seats or more available. Closing night is always exciting as scholarships are presented to the students involved in the arts.

Tickets are a bargain at only $17 each, and you get to see the Amity High School Theater Program, which won the Best Musical honor at the 2013 CT High School Musical Awards.

 

Mar 142014
 

Shaylen Harger and cast mates from "In The Heights" on Better Connecticut March 14.

Shaylen Harger and cast mates from “In The Heights” on Better Connecticut March 14.

This afternoon, at 3 p.m., 8 of the Amity Performing Arts students (and director Rob Kennedy) appeared on WFSB’s Better Connecticut where they performed a song from the upcoming spring musical “In The Heights.”

Click HERE to see the performance.

Shaylen Harger who plays “Nina” sang the lead and, might I add, was just perfect.

The entire group was wonderful, each time I’ve visited a rehearsal they are working so hard on every aspect of this show.

Show dates are April 4, 5, 10, 11, 12. Tickets are ONLY $17. Click HERE for the box office.

If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, you’d better hurry. “In the Heights” will sell out quickly, it’s already nearly 75% filled. Thursday, April 10 has the most available seating.

Procrastination will get you nowhere!

 

 

Jun 132013
 

Trophies from the recent Ct. High School Musical Theater Awards in the forefront on a table for all to see at Wednesday's award dinner.

Trophies from the recent Ct. High School Musical Theater Awards in the forefront on a table for all to see at Wednesday’s award dinner.

The Amity Theater Department held its annual awards dinner Wednesday evening.

The following students were honored for their exemplary contribution to the theater department in the past year for not only the award winning Spring Musical “Sweeney Todd,” but all other performances throughout the 2012-13 school year.

Parents of Amity Creative Theater Spirit Award and Scholarship- Emily Rippel and Chloe Eitzer

Outstanding Freshman- Chris Cassella

Outstanding Member of the Ensemble- Chelsea Tambis and Arlo Eitzer

Outstanding Supporting Actress- Sarah DeFeo

Outstanding Supporting Actor- Ted McNulty

Outstanding Actor in a Play- Peter Charney

Outstanding Actress in a Play- Miriam Roday

Techie of the Year- Catie Clark

Outstanding Student Production- The Mystery of Cecil Blue- Rishi Mutalik, Kahari Blue, Gabby Aiardo, Caroline Burkhart, Emma Lampropoulos, Arlo Eitzer and Zach Arons

Outstanding Actor in a Musical- Kevin Durkee

Outstanding Actress in a Musical- Alida Ballou

Thespian of the Year- Andrew Gusciora

Congratulations to all of the winners, we will truly miss the seniors next year and look forward to all the great things the underclassmen will accomplish in 1013-14 and in years to come.

Thank you all for sharing your talents with the Amity community.

Andrea Kennedy, Rishi Mutalik, Addie Robbins Byran Kirby and Rob Kennedy at the Amity Theater Department Award Dinner.

Andrea Kennedy, Rishi Mutalik, Addie Robbins, Byran Kirby and Rob Kennedy at the Amity Theater Department Award Dinner.

Jun 042013
 

IMG_0644The ballots are in, the judges have deliberated and Amity High School is up for 14 categories in the 2013 Ct High School Musical Awards, (The Most Nominations of All Participating Schools) including Outstanding Lead Actress, Outstanding Supporting Actress and Supporting Actor, Director, Orchestra and more.

I would Love to see Alida Ballou go to New York City for the National High School Musical Awards. And best of luck to Peter Charney, you’re a senior so you just have to win!

Congratulations to all the nominees. You all deserve to win!

The CT High School Musical Awards take place tonight, Tuesday, June 4 in Waterbury.

OUTSTANDING HAIR & MAKE UP ACHIEVEMENT

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD

OUTSTANDING COSTUMING ACHIEVEMENT

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Julie Chevan

OUTSTANDING LIGHTING DESIGN ACHIEVEMENT

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Dan Hassenmayer

OUTSTANDING SET DESIGN ACHIEVEMENT

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Robert Kennedy

OUTSTANDING DIRECTION

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Robert & Andrea Kennedy

OUTSTANDING MUSIC DIRECTION

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Peter Randazzo

OUTSTANDING ORCHESTRA

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD

OUTSTANDING LEADING ACTRESS

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Alida Baliou – MRS. LOVETT

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTRESS

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Shaylen Harger – JOHANNA

OUTSTANDING SUPPORTING ACTOR

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Peter Charney – TOBY

OUTSTANDING CHORUS

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD

OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION OF THE YEAR

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD

OUTSTANDING LOBBY DISPLAY

Amity Regional High School – SWEENEY TODD
Cheri Charney & Tom Lawler

STUDENT ACHIEVEMENT

For the visuals that we saw on the background screens during the show.

Mar 282013
 

IMG_0622Sitting in on the rehearsal for Sweeney Todd at Amity High School Wednesday night, I was pleasantly surprised by how wonderful and catchy the songs are.

This is one musical that I was completely unfamiliar with, just as I was clueless about Les Miserables back in 2010. I haven’t seen the entire play yet, just bits and pieces, a song here, a scene there, but I think once it’s all together it’s going to be wonderful.

The Orchestra was in place last night and rehearsal was a bit intense with the cast having to sing certain big numbers for the first time with the live orchestra.
With only 9 days before opening night, it was time to get serious and get it right as soon as possible.

This show has several extraordinary sopranos, including Shaylen Harger, whose parents, Gary and Barbie, of Orange, are both amazing singers. Also Nicole Simon who wowed us with teased hair, and the line “I was in the shower” in last year’s Legally Blonde, really shows off her high octave ability. And Alida Ballou, who played one of Elle’s giddy BFFs in Legally Blonde takes on a more adult role in Sweeney where she can really show off her voice.

Traditionally by this time, all shows would be nearly sold out, but unfortunately, a fabricated story that got blown out of proportion put a dark cloud over this production and there are still plenty of seats remaining in the left and right sections on all five nights.

IMG_0628The entire cast, crew and orchestra have been working hard since November on this production and it is sure to amaze all theater goers as past Amity productions have.

“That story really hurt our ticket sales,” said Director Rob Kennedy.

The show will take place on April 5th, 6th, 11th, 12th, and 13th @ 7:30 p.m.  Tickets can be purchased online at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com or by calling 203-392-2019.  All seats are reserved and cost $17.00

If you haven’t gotten your tickets yet, I encourage you to visit the performing arts website at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com soon, choose your seats and pay for them online before it’s too late and witness another Amity High School musical gem.

Dec 032012
 

Amity Senior Peter Charney stars in Whose Life Is It Anyway?

The Amity High School theater department presents the gripping medical drama Whose Life is it Anyway?

Who should decide when or if a patient may end his or her own life? That is the dilemma of the play “Whose Life Is It Anyway?” by Brian Clark, produced by the Amity Creative Theater this Friday and Saturday.

After a horrible car accident, an artist is left paralyzed from the neck down. Confined to a hospital bed with feeding tubes providing nutrients, the artist believes there is nothing left to live for while a well-meaning hospital staff tries to convince their patient not to give up hope. Everything leads to a court hearing held in the artist’s hospital room as a judge must determine who gets to make the final decision for the patient.

The Amity production stars Amity senior Peter Charney as Ken Harrison in a very demanding role which requires him to play a paraplegic.  Kens concerned and caring doctor Joan Scott is played by senior Sabrina Brier.  Rounding out the cast is April Rock, Miriam Roday, James Ottaviano, Matt Burkhart, Ted McNulty, Alida Ballou, Maya Rose, Bowen Kirwood, Kahari Blue, Rishi Mutalik and Gabrielle Airdo.

I sat in on a rehearsal this week and was moved by Peter Charney’s magnificent portrayal. The character speaks to me as I saw my dear friend Bob Crocco go through many of the same emotions during his battle with ALS.

I’ve known (of) Peter since he was 7 years old and watched him in different performances and I looked forward to seeing him in a perfect role to showcase his acting talent.

At Amity we’ve seen Peter sing, act, juggle and entertain us in many memorable roles. Peter is a senior now and this is one of the last opportunities you’ll have to see him on the Amity Stage. Buy your tickets now.

As is tradition at Amity the play will be presented to all the students grade 8-12 from December 4th to the 7th as part of the Spartan Seminar program.  Students will discuss the plays legal and moral issues before viewing the play and engage in a question and answer session after each performance with the cast, crew and Amity teacher Jim Clifford who also is an attorney.  The play is directed by Amity Theater teacher Rob Kennedy, with costumes by Julie Chevan and Lighting by Dan Hassenmayer.

There will also be two public performances of Whose Life Is It Anyway? on Friday December 7th and Saturday December 8th at 8pm.  All performances will be held at the John J. Brady Center for the Performing Arts on the campus at Amity High School.  Tickets can be purchased online at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com all seats are $10.

Nov 172012
 

Amity High School theater department will present the Tony Award winning drama “Whose Life Is It Anyway?’ by Brian Clark.

Who should decide when or if a patient may end his or her own life? That is the dilemma of the play “Whose Life Is It Anyway?” After a horrible car accident; an artist is left paralyzed from the neck down. Confined to a hospital bed with feeding tubes providing nutrients; the artist believes there is nothing left to live for while a well-meaning hospital staff tries to convince their patient not to give up hope. Everything leads to a court hearing held in the artist’s hospital room as a judge must determine who gets to make the final decision for the patient.

The performance dates are December 7th and 8th at 8pm at the John J. Brady Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of Amity High School. All seats $10.
Tickets can be purchased online at www.amitytheaterdepartment.com

Aug 232012
 

One of the magnificent castles the Amity Theater group saw during the past two weeks in the United Kingdom. (Photo by Rob Kennedy)

On Thursday, Aug. 23, Rob Kennedy, director of the Amity Theater department and chaperone for the two-week trip to the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh Scotland, wrote this final entry in his daily blog from the land of kilts, medieval castles and the Loch Ness Monster.

Kennedy wrote: “Last full day here in Scotland. Up and out tomorrow at 5am. No photos today as the batteries on the camera died. We had an easy morning. A few kids climbed Arthur’s Seat again at 6:30 a.m.”

Since Rob’s camera batteries went dead and there are no new pictures, I will recap their trip with some of his beautiful scenic shots that I did not publish previously.