The 5th graders of Dwight-Englewood School have worked all year long to create an original opera, entitled If It’s Broken… Who Will Fix It? which they performed to a full house on Thursday, April 27. The theme they chose for the opera was “perseverance”, because the 5th graders all related to the experience of not giving up when facing an obstacle, whether it be physical, academic or personal.
The Great 48 Opera Company was made up of 48 students who each had a different job, including composer, performer, writer, public relations officer, electrician, stage manager, set designer, costume & makeup designer, carpenter, electrician, historian, and production manager. Composer Davide Orlov thinks that being a composer was fun, although “you can’t fool around, because it’s a tough job.” Writer Uma Rajan adds, “Writing in the opera was very stressful, but you get to watch the opera over and over again, which was a good thing.”
D-E teacher Mary Heveran has directed this program from the Metropolitan Opera Education Department for the past 31 years. “Every year I continue to be amazed at what children can do on their own when given the opportunity. This program is one of the finest examples of project-based learning,” she says. Ella Siminou, a public relations officer, summed up the experience, “The opera all came together because we all cooperated and persevered!”