Pirates! The Musical Performed at Woodland Elementary

 Photo: Pirates! The Musical was performed by the students of the Woodland Elementary Music Club on April 13th. The costumes and set were funded and created entirely by the parents and family members of the performers. Over $300 was raised from ticket and baked good sales, all of which will go to future productions.

By Lura Jackson

“Art is fundamental, unique to each of us… Even in difficult economic times - especially in difficult economic times - the arts are essential,” said award-winning writer Maria Shriver, speaking in favor of the importance of embracing the arts and creativity. Despite the oft-recognized relationship between the arts and the development of well-rounded individuals, it is frequently the arts budget in a school system that gets targeted first when shortfalls are present. At Woodland Elementary, a group of parents and teachers circumvented this lack of funding to organize Pirates! The Musical – performed entirely by the students in the Woodland Elementary Music Club on April 13th. 

The Woodland Elementary Music Club has been meeting every Monday after school for the past few months under the guidance of music teacher Christine Sawtelle, who volunteers her time to the club. The students were interested in putting on a performance, but the club had no budget to speak of. Several parents came forward to offer assistance, and the possibility of performing Pirates! soon became a reality. Trina Nielsen designed the set and she and Elaine Newman did all of the costuming. Other parents pitched in to build the set and contribute wherever they could.

Knowing that more funds would be needed in the future to hold other productions, the parents opted to charge $2.00 for admission to the musical. Dozens upon dozens of baked goods were made for the event by parents, grandparents, teachers, and the principal of the school, all of which were sold for $0.25 each. By the end of the night, the production raised over $300 to put towards the students’ next effort.

“It was great. The kids had a really great time,” said parent Tara Peterson. The audience was filled with delighted spectators, many of whom were friends and family members of the performers.

The cast of the musical was as follows: King of the High "Cs": Cassie Carter; Stow Away: Cameron Roderick; Blue Beard: Paige Gagner; White Beard: Onyx Trott-Newman; Purple Beard: Maygin Steadman; Red Beard: Hudson DePriest; Green Beard: Lily Connolly; Brown Beard: Ariana Niles-Cowell; and the Prisoners: Desiree Ouellette, Autumn Honas, Shantel Campbell, Chloe Hoyt, and Garrett Clark.