Local elementary school student finding a home on the stage

 

By Ron Giofu

 

A local elementary school student is finding a home on the stage.

Emily Richard was part of Migration Hall Productions’ “Seussical: The Musical” with public performances having taken place the last two weekends in Kingsville. She played one of the show’s main characters – JoJo – in the production.

The Anderdon Public School Grade 8 student will also be part of her school’s production of “Willy Wonka Jr.” later this spring as she will be playing the role of Violet.

“I just have a lot of fun. It doesn’t matter what role I’m in,” said Emily. “It’s about having fun with the awesome people that are doing it with you.”

Emily Richard (left), a Grade 8 student at Anderdon Public School, took part in Migration Hall Production’s recent performance of “Seussical: The Musical.” She will also be in Anderdon’s upcoming “Willy Wonka Jr.” production. (Submitted photo)

Her mother Darrie-Ann explained that Emily “got the bug” after performing in previous Anderdon shows such as “Annie” and “The Little Mermaid Jr.” They looked for a theatre company for Emily to join and decided on Migration Hall Productions. Her first performance in Kingsville was “Oliver.”

“It’s just a lot of fun,” explained Emily. “It’s hard to explain.”

“When her dad and I watch her (perform on stage), she’s in pure bliss,” said Darrie-Ann.

There have been some nights this fall and winter where they would leave rehearsals at Anderdon and go straight to Kingsville for “Seussical” rehearsals.

“I’ve only done musicals so far,” said Emily. “I want to branch out when I get into high school. I want to try it all and see what I enjoy the most.”

Emily will attend General Amherst High School next year.

Emily started performing at age 9 in “Annie” at Anderdon Public School and started at Migration Hall when she was 12-years-old. Not only does she perform on stage, she assists in building sets and other behind-the-scenes work as well. During “Seussical: The Musical” she performed with people ranging in age from six to 60.

“That’s the joy of community theatre bringing the entire community together,” said Darrie-Ann.

Emily Richard, a Grade 8 student at Anderdon Public School, took part in Migration Hall Production’s recent performance of “Seussical: The Musical.” She will also be in Anderdon’s upcoming “Willy Wonka Jr.” production. (Submitted photo)

Darrie-Ann said Emily has taken dance lessons before but she seems to prefer acting and singing, though dance is still a major part of what Emily does during performances.

“She calls the stage her happy place,” said Darrie-Ann, adding that about 300 Anderdon students watched Emily in a performance of “Seussical” last week.

“The immense support of her school is always a blessing,” said Darrie-Ann.

Drama, acting and singing are options for kids, Darrie-Ann added, and they want to let other students know that as well.

“There’s a lot of opportunities out there if kids are interested,” said Darrie-Ann.

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