By Melissa Moore-Randall
The cast and crew of the Revere High Musical “In the Heights” were honored at the Massachusetts State House on May 15th. They were invited to perform and were recognized for their hard work, commitment and talent. The musical was the first performed in over 30 years at Revere High School. Under the direction of RPS Fine Arts Director Kelly Williams, Drama Teacher Kristina Menissian and Assistant Drama Teacher Tina Petty, the performance was a hit with the Revere community.
“Yesterday was such a great experience for my students and a fitting finale to what has felt like a whirlwind year for RHS Drama Club. It was a proud moment to hear our kids’ voices ringing through the State House as they sang three songs from our show. Our students drew a crowd as they concluded our encore performance.
“I was so proud to welcome students from my High School (class of 2010) to perform a number of musical and theatrical renditions from ‘In the Heights’, at the State House,” said Representative Giannino (D-Revere). “This event was a great opportunity for our students to showcase their talents for all to see and for the delegation to show how proud we are of what’s happening here in Revere. The display of talent, community, and pride echoed through the marble halls.”
The day ended with Representatives Giannino and Turco presenting me with a document on behalf of the Massachusetts House of Representatives that read “Reestablishing Revere High School’s Drama Club after a 30 year absence with an uplifting celebration of Hispanic culture that garnered the support from the creator of “In The Heights” , Lin-Manuel Miranda! Your dedication and talent are commendable.” said Drama Teacher Kristina Menissian.
“Starting with a personalized message from the writer of our show himself, Lin-Manuel Miranda, successfully producing two nearly sold- out shows in our 850 seat theatre, the multiple news outlets that covered our show from the Boston Globe to Broadwayworld.com, the WBZ 4 commercial highlighting our musical theatre program at RHS that will air through May, and then performing and being honored by Representatives Giannino and Turco at the State House was truly a great finale!”
Menissian went on to add, “It was really an honor to be in a house session, to honor former Representative Reinstein and have my students witness more of the business inside the State House- some of which had never even visited before. A few students noticed the pictures of Governor Healy and Lt Governor Driscoll as well as our own Representative Giannino who are positive examples of women in government!”
“Reestablishing the after school theatre program at RHS has seemed to have had a positive impact on these students and (hopefully) our community.Theatre is so important and so impactful for fostering creativity, but more importantly, in creating a safe space for all students regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, grade level, economic background, academic ability, language, etc. Theatre teaches us empathy and offers opportunities to walk in others shoes or in the case of In The Heights cast, to show what it is like to walk in the shoes of hispanic immigrants- a relatable story for many of our students or any immigrant family. I hope our RHS students recognize the positive impact they’ve had on their school community as well as being a source of pride for our greater Revere community.I could not be more proud of our students.”
Revere High School Junior and Stage Manager for “In The Heights”, Adriana DeCicco, said “It was cool going there in general because I had never been there. It was awesome hearing our cast sing there too because of the amazing acoustics. It was an interesting experience getting to showcase the RHS Drama Club talent in the MA State House! A day we will always remember.”
The Fine Arts Department will close out their successful year of performances on May 25th and 26th with “Clue” performed by Garfield Middle School and June 1 and June 2 with “Alice in Wonderland” performed by Rumney Marsh Academy.