Crossroads News

Middle Schoolers Deliver Prize-Winning Performances

Crossroads students excel at the annual Drama Teachers Association of Southern California Shakespeare Festival.
Every year, on or as close to William Shakespeare’s April 23 birthday as possible, the Drama Teachers Association of Southern California (DTASC) hosts its annual Shakespeare Festival for middle and high school students around the region. At the virtual 2021 festival, “All the world's a stage”—Shakespeare’s oft-quoted line from “As You Like It”—proved applicable to Zoom screens, as well. Crossroads students competed against peers from six other schools in nine events, and earned two first-place prizes and one third-place prize.
“The festivals get us out of our Santa Monica bubble,” says Middle and Upper School Drama Teacher Zoey Zimmerman. “In addition to providing the opportunity to work on their craft, it gives our student-actors a place to bond with one another and meet new friends from socio-economically diverse schools throughout southern California.”
Sixth graders Sienna Diez Barroso, Clara Heffes, Asa Sheridan and Owen Way and seventh grader Mati Fuchs-Lynch performed an eight-minute “Theme Collage” on the “climate emergency.” The collage included excerpts from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” “As You Like It,” “King Lear” and “The Tempest.” Click here to watch their performance, which earned third place.
“I found it really interesting and fun to work on a Shakespeare piece, even in such a different way from usual,” notes Mati after the festival.
For the “Characters in Disguise” competition, eighth graders Jake Siegel, Jemma Handler and Kerron Jones earned first place for their performance of a scene from “As You Like It.” Click here to view their performance.
Seventh graders Chloe Alimento-Miller, Emma Becerra and Tyson Clark followed suit, winning first place in the “Final Act” event for their performance from “Macbeth.” Click here to view their performance.
Participating in the event taught Chloe how many of the topics in Shakespeare’s plays are still relevant today. Upon winning, Chloe recalls, “I was really surprised.” And she’s not done performing Shakespeare: “I especially would like to someday perform ‘Taming of the Shrew.’”