Every year, students come together to perform in the spring musical. This year, the cast has expanded to include members of the faculty.
When casting the musical, director Martha Pierce put out a call for members of the faculty to perform as nuns in the chorus. Five high school teachers and two nurses have signed up, as well as teachers from the middle and elementary schools.
“It’s great fun, we’ve been accepted by the kids and it’s nice to be a part of what they’re doing,” said Catherine Zackey, Latin teacher.
For Zackey, the role is especially interesting since much of what the nun chorus sings is in Latin.
“My favorite part is that we are singing in Latin, so when I saw that I thought that was a particularly entertaining idea for me,” said Zackey. “I don’t have that obstacle that some of the other nuns are finding.”
When practices began, the faculty members had separate practices for them to learn their songs and choreography. Practices have since been joined, as members of the cast will perform alongside students at all show times.
“They’re just as much a part of the cast as any other person there,” said sophomore Catelynn Bortz, who plays Sister Berthe. “We’ve enjoyed them so much and I don’t know why we haven’t done it before, it’s just so much fun with them.”
Among the elementary school teachers performing is fifth grade teacher Maria Bickel, who teaches at Ebenezer Elementary. Bickel has long been a fan of the show and has even been on The Sound of Music tour in Austria.
“By incorporating teachers and staff into the show, hopefully students who would not have come to see the show will come and be hooked,” said Bickel. “I was hooked in 4th grade when I saw the show at my high school for the first time. You never know who will find a new passion by sharing your own.”
Her fifth grade year, Bortz had Bickel as a teacher. The musical has given her an opportunity to spend time with Bickel in a different setting.
“I love her so much, she was one of my favorite elementary school teachers and she is such an inspiring person,” said Bortz. “There are so many life lessons that she teaches her students that honestly stick with them for all of high school, all of middle school, and I’m sure that her lessons will stick with me for the rest of my life.”
As she plays a nun, Bortz has spent an especially large amount of time with Bickel and other faculty cast members. Bortz helped Bickel learn both the music and its pronunciation.
“She just makes it an even better environment to be around,” said Bortz. “Musicals and plays are always so much fun in and of itself but just with the right people there, it can be such an amazing experience.”