Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Dyer’s All-School Field Trip to See Seussical

Written by: Joyce Uglow of Dyer Intermediate School, Burlington, WI

Photo Credit: Horton played by Rick Pendzich and Gertrude played by Amber Nicole Dilger (Mrs. Ester's daughter-in-law) in SEUSSICAL. Photo by Jared Clarkin, First Stage.


On October 12, Dyer Intermediate School filled the entire Todd Wehr Theater in Milwaukee to see Seussical. In preparation for the trip, Dyer’s music teacher, Mrs. Ester taught the lyrics and storyline to Dyer’s fifth and sixth grade music classes. Throughout the musical, Dyer students could be seen smiling and could be heard singing along with the characters! Besides the cultural experience of seeing a musical, the students had the opportunity to think some “Big Thinks.”

In Seussical, which is based on the works of Dr. Seuss, Horton is bullied for being different. In spite of bullying, Horton continues to be a caring “elephant” and strives to find a lost clover in order to save Whoville. Throughout the musical, a bird named Gertrude unsuccessfully attempted to get Horton’s attention. Gertrude even went to a doctor for help in growing a long, fancy tail. Along the way, both Horton and Gertrude became more aware of what is truly important and eventually “find” each other. In fact, both Horton and Gertrude stand up for what is different and right. The Cat in the Hat told the audience, “It’s possible. Anything’s possible.”

Seussical’s Big Thinks hit home for the Dyer tweens because it is at this age that attempts to be an individual, find oneself, make friends and fend off bullying are commonplace. Horton reminded us, “A person is a person no matter how small.”

The Dyer students and staff enjoyed a bag lunch at Whitnall Park after seeing the incredibly well done play. Sixth grader, Shandon Walton proclaimed that the play was “stunning” and that it was amazing to see how “seriously the young actors took their roles.”

This field trip was in part thanks to Music Matter of Burlington. Music Matters is a not-for-profit group raising funds to promote and support the musical programming in the Burlington community through collaboration with school and community groups as well as individuals. The organization supports the musical staff of the Burlington Area School District in spreading awareness of the extraordinary musical programs offered in order to publicly share the success of these and other community musical programs. You can find more information about the Burlington Music Matters group at their website http://sites.google.com/site/burlingtonmusicmatters/home

Something that Cat in the Hat said is something for all of us to keep in mind: “Oh the thinks you can think if you’re willing to try.”

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