Updated 08/28/2012 01:40 PM
Opera helps teach anti-bullying lesson in HIgh Point
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HIGH POINT — Students at Johnson Street Global Studies in High Point got a special lesson Tuesday as they learned an anti-bullying message through opera. It is a theme organizers plan to take to 30 elementary schools across the Triad.
For many of the students, it's their first time being exposed to opera. “What they do is take childhood stories, in this case it's the Billy Goats Gruff, last year it was 3 little Pigs and the recreate the story with a message,” said UNC School of the Arts graduate student Jennifer Lazarz.
The message is an important one: what to do when being bullied.
“It goes about it in many different ways. The kids try to figure out should we cross it on our own? Should we go get our parents? Should I stand up to the bully and so it's a good way for discussion when its over to say which goat handled it the best and how did it work out?,” said Fletcher Opera Institute Managing Director Steven LaCrosse.
Anyone who may think elementary students would not find opera interesting, has missed the mark.
“What amazes me each time is how glued the kids are to that live performance. They really sit and they're like in the story, they believe it. We have very little scenery, very little real props, they just come out and tell the story. And the kids just, their imaginations are quite active,” LaCrosse said.
Organizers hope through the program, students get some valuable information but also grow an interest in opera. The performers are graduate level students at UNC School of the Arts. The group will travel to other schools through out the Triad in the coming months to continue spreading their message to students.