As a kid, I was fortunate enough to grow up with theatre. Because of this, I wanted to do a project that could help spread a former passion of mine. I decided to make a documentary on the theatre program at Overbrook Educational Center (OEC). OEC is an elementary/ middle school located in West Philadelphia. With their recently developed theatre program, I wanted to explore its effects on the youth that participated. Since March, I’ve been going to their rehearsals 2-3 times a week, documenting their production of High School Musical. The more I attended rehearsals, the more I fell in love with the stories I could tell about their experiences. I learned very quickly how theatre improved the characteristics of many of the participants. Some people grew more confident and others found a voice they didn’t know they had. With all of that in mind, I realized that making a documentary solely for this senior project wasn’t enough. Even after I am finished with my senior year, I will continue to produce the project as a full-length documentary. Every member of the cast deserves to have their voices heard about something they care about.
The video I prepared as my capstone is a reflection of my time thus far with them. It recaps what I learned and what I’m excited about in the future. It features interviews with a few of the cast members and ample observational footage. I hope you enjoy!