Theatre students used to only dream of directing their own shows. Now with the implant of one of Keller ISD’s new innovative courses, that dream can become reality.
The class called Directing is a part of the district’s new move towards offering students more in-depth opportunities in their course work. This class gives them the resources to learn how to direct pieces by providing them with a platform to make their creations come to life. Theatre Director, Paul Raska, explains how this was a class many students had been requesting for a while now.
“We always have–every year–seniors who ask us, ‘can we do a senior direct?’, which just with our scheduling calendar and the productions that we do, it’s a little tough and we have to be creative if we’re gonna offer that.” Raska explains. “So we knew the kids wanted it. The district was aware of that, and so at the district level they worked to offer this course.”
And offer it they did. When picking out electives at the end of last year, enough students signed up for the class that it made. Since the beginning of the school year, the class has already begun working and performing their very own scenes with Raska who gives them tips and pointers to help the scenes grow.
“I believe that when students direct their actors, it reinforces the acting lessons that we taught them,” said Raska. “So I hope that they become better actors because their sitting on the other side of the stage.”
They will eventually build up to directing and putting together a whole show by the end of the year. The opportunities given to those who take Directing, however, go beyond the classroom. Students are given the choice to compete against one another to submit a student-directed piece that will represent Timber Creek at a district level competition.
Other innovative courses in the theatre department that were added include the Movement class, Improvisational class, Musical Theatre 1 and 2 and Partners in Theatre.