‘All The World’s a Stage’ for Students at The Drama Academy

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Comedy, Tragedy and Musicals, acting, playwriting, set design and lighting, students in the Forest Hills High School Drama Academy experience it all. Rigorous instruction, modern equipment and a renovated facility present students with a unique opportunity. Together with a skilled, dedicated and enthusiastic staff, the school offers a diverse and in-depth 4 year Performing Arts curriculum.

Workshop with guest artist Kevin Spacey.
Workshop with guest artist Kevin Spacey

Back in the spotlight, this “Blue Ribbon School of Excellence” continues to impress. In collaboration with Fidelity’s FutureStage, freshman Sarah Schlesinger’s play will represent the school for a “Night on Broadway” at the New World Stages Theatre in Manhattan, also performed by fellow classmates. And back at school, Senior Director and current Play Production director for 100l Arabian Knights, Bruce Minson tells it like it is, “We can give students our best, but ultimately they are the ones who deliver the goods to the audience.”

Mr. OConnell at Saturday rehearsal of 1001 Arabian Nights.
Mr. O’Connell at Saturday rehearsal of 1001 Arabian Nights

Luminaries enhance the program. Guest artists have included Steve Dimenna (artistic director of MCC theatre in Manhattan), actors Kevin Spacey, Jim Jack, Joe White (Law and Order) and Chaz Palminteri author of A Bronx Tale. Academy Production Manager Natalie Miletic states, “The Drama Academy proves that kids are capable of the very best if given the opportunity.”

The Drama Academy holds auditions for students in the 8th grade. Drama activities open to students outside the Academy are Play Production and the Shakespeare Club. Next year, students in the program will study Film Production with Juliana Fragias.

Dracula a biting performance.
Biting performances

Whether for theatre or film, preparing students for college and professional careers remains The Drama Academy’s primary mission. Program Director Larry O’Connell emphasizes, “Many aspects go into production giving a lot of students a chance to be a part of what makes it all happen. In addition to learning the craft, students build social skills, confidence and pride. The lifetime remembrance of their work or performance before parents, friends and classmates is priceless.”

Majestic clock tower, red brick and limestone columns, the Georgian style building exudes theatrical atmosphere. Check your calendar. Manhattan is not the only place to catch a show.

David Pambianchi is a New York writer, who loves to tell stories about the city, the people, the entertainment, the sport and the businesses that catch his attention.