Sunday, December 11, 2011


The Big Bad Musical 
comes to Herrera's PAC stage this December

Opening Night: Wednesday, December 14, 2011 at 6:00 PM
Student Performance: Thursday, December 15, 2011 at 9:00 AM
Produced by special arrangement with
Pioneer Drama Service, Inc., Englewood, Colorado

The Big Bad Wolf's day has come.  Fairy tale characters are fed up with his shenanigans and have taken him to court.  Will he be found guilty and made to pay for his crimes or will he be free to terrorize more fairy tale characters?  Sidney Grimm of EFN, Enchanted Forest News, covers the trial.

He's got a history of vandalism, blowin' down houses for fun.
Ooooooh, telemavision!

Oh, why didn't you ask me that?

...So help you Hans Christian Anderson.
I will not sit without a tuffet!

...But that's none of your business!

Look, I've gotta go flush some live fish down the toilet.


Remember me?  I won best in flannel.

He's awful sorry for the things he's done.





Tuesday, November 29, 2011

As if.....

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As if... is a drama activity that Herrera actors can't get enough of.  It allows them to work on drama skills and be creatively active while also getting crazy loud in the classroom.....so much for using our indoor voices.  Actors know that there is a purpose behind the madness.  We work on physical, facial and vocal expression through this activity.  We call this kind of chaos in my classroom "controlled crazy."   It is so much fun to see the quietest, most reserved actors get lost in the moment.  One specific actor really got caught up in the moment.  Check him out at the end of the video.  Actors of all ages and ability levels are successful playing As if...      

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Fine Arts Teachers & Students Collaborate to Celebrate 140 Years!


Phoenix Elementary School District #1 turns 140 years old on October 19, 2011!  To celebrate, every school in the district created a presentation to represent their school.  Herrera's contribution is a model of a stage with cutouts/pictures of actual past and present students showing off their talents.  What makes this presentation special is that it is a collaborative project between fine arts teachers and students.  Jayce, Joshua and Sergio, students from the Technical Theatre class constructed the model stage while fine arts teachers took care of the finishing touches.  The following video will give you an idea of the process of creating Herrera's contribution to our 140th Birthday Celebration.

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Saturday, October 15, 2011

Collaborating to Build Machines



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The Machines activity is great for teaching collaboration and focus, not to mention patterns and repetition.  It also helps actors overcome the fear of looking or sounding silly in front of others.  First, actors experiment with repetitive sounds and movements on their own.  Then they join others to build a machine with connected moving parts and sounds.  The key is to focus on your own sound and movement while hearing and seeing other rhythms around you.  At first it looks like total madness, but you know you've got it when the group can speed up and slow down at the same pace.  Actors from first to eight grade are successful in this activity.  The hard part is getting them back to the classrooms quietly.  

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Improvise..... Make It Up!

First through fourth grade drama students started the year playing drama games to work on collaboration and improvisation skills.  This week we defined the word "improvise".  Before defining the word, I asked students to write what they think it means to improvise when you forget your lines.

Richard is right!  You should make something up that is as similar to your lines as you can remember.  Alexis suggested that it means to close your eyes and visualize your script in your mind.  Whatever you do, you definitely shouldn't panic and run backstage.  
Relax and improvise.  Make something up and keep going.  
Fake it till you make it!



Sunday, May 1, 2011

Tableau! Playing Martha's Game



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A tableau is a picture created by a grouping of silent, motionless actors.  In Martha's Game one player at a time jumps in to add to the picture.  No one really knows why it's called Martha's Game, but students have a great time with this game.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Friday, March 25, 2011

K-2 Musical Literacy Night

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Kinder students from Ms. Sanchez and Mrs. Martinez's class collaborated with first and second graders from Mrs. Diaz, Mr. Ortega and Mr. James' class to present musicals based on the books The Story of Ferdinand and Caps for Sale.  Jr. High students in the Tech Theatre class were responsible for constructing and preparing set pieces and props.  Even our parent volunteers helped out by making papel picado for the bullfight scene in Madrid.  


Faith, from Mrs. Martinez's kinder class, used her time in writer's workshop to write a book about her experience performing as the bee in The Story of Ferdinand.  


Friday, March 18, 2011

The Cheetah and the Sloth

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Mrs. Hobden's 3rd graders and Ms. L'Italiens class performed The Cheetah and the Sloth.  This video is a shortened version of their performance.  DVD's of the complete performance are available from 
Miss Angulo and the Herrera DramaLlamas Drama Club.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Three Stages According to Ms. Gonzalez's 4th Graders



............Proscenium Stage............


       The proscenium stage is a common stage for schools.  It is used for plays and dance performances and other things.  The proscenium stage has one house for the audience to sit in.   It has in arch at the front of the stage called the proscenium arch and it has a wall in the back and on two sides. It has a backstage area.  The actors must face the audience.  This is the kind of stage we have at Herrera School. 



............Arena Stage............


        The arena stage has the audience on four sides and it does not have any curtains or a backstage area. The arena stage has several stage features that the other stages don’t have. The arena stage is square or round.  The actors are in the middle of the stage. Each actor that is on the stage faces every direction so the audience can see the actor that is facing them. The arena stage could be used for a concert or a basketball stadium, circus or Wrestle Mania.


............Thrust Stage............
     




        The thrust stage is used for modeling and it is also used for performing.   Actors and models perform on the thrust stage.  The thrust stage looks like a “T”.  The audience sits on three sides of the stage.  The thrust stage is also known as a cat walk for modeling.
     



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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Director Nevaeh

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While other students were still working on their animal costumes, Nevaeh from Mrs. Diaz's 1st & 2nd grade class, directed her classmates in a play she created.  Nevaeh is quite the leader.  Sometimes I think she can teach the class all by herself.

Roosters, Bees and Snails, Oh My!

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Earlier this year kindergarten students made animal costumes.  After days of coloring, cutting and assembling their costumes, they finally got  to put them on, go outside and get into character.  

Little Red and Mr. Wolf

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Michael and Alexis from Mrs. Amavisca's 4th grade class as Little Red and Mr. Wolf.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Jadan Converts an Art Cart

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Jadan converted an art cart into a microphone receiver cart and Gabriel set up the microphone receivers.  Listen to Jadan giggle as he drills those holes.  His mom said he is so excited about Tech Theatre that he uses a tape measure at home all the time now.

Musical Theatre Workshop

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Musical Theatre Workshop students read through their scenes in preparation for their first in-class performances.

Boss of the World

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Mrs. Amavisca's 4th graders rehearse their play about a bossy little girl named Janice.  Janice thinks she knows everything and bosses everyone around.

Little Late Riding Hood

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Mrs. Gore's 6th graders rehearse Little Late Riding Hood.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Power Drilling


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We have a new batch of students in Tech Theatre this semester.  Today was our first day using power tools and guess what?!?  We've all still got eight fingers and ten toes....can't forget the two thumbs!