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EMS students have rich experience with ‘Fiddler’

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By Deb Hurley Brobst

The strains of Broadway musical show tunes are once again filling the halls of Evergreen Middle School.

This time it’s “If I Were a Rich Man” and “Sunrise, Sunset,” as 60 students prepare to perform “Fiddler on the Roof” at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 24 and 25 in the school cafeteria.

“This is one of my favorite shows,” said director and instrumental music teacher Missy Calkin. “I performed in this show when I was in high school.”

“Fiddler on the Roof” centers on Tevye, a father of five daughters who struggles to maintain his family values and Jewish religion despite outside influences.

Four EMS teachers form the core of the directing staff: Calkin, Susan Scott, Val Erickson and Rachel Ullrich. They, plus eighth-grader Morgan Hays, who serves as assistant director, and a group of parents help the students make the show happen.

“The show has such a wonderful message about family, diversity, understanding and looking outside ourselves at the world,” Calkin said.

Playing Tevya is eighth-grader Jonah Arnold, who says that he’s learned a lot from the part.

“Playing Tevya is easier than I thought it would be,” Jonah said, “but he is different than I expected. I didn’t think he would be as free. I get to look into his thoughts, and that’s a different experience than I’ve had before.”

Jonah, who has been acting for the past few years, said learning all of Tevya’s lines and keeping a straight face during some of the serious scenes are his two biggest challenges.

Eighth-grader Carly Rinehardt plays Tevya’s wife, Golda. She says she’s enjoyed getting to know the cast and singing in the show. She says the hardest parts are the scenes in which she has to show anger.

When the show is over, she’s looking forward to having more friends in other grades at school.

Tickets are being sold during lunch at the school, and tickets are also available by e-mailing Erickson at verickso@jeffco.k12.co.us.

Pennies for Patients

Both Wilmot and Bergen Meadow elementary schools are participating in Pennies for Patients, a fund-raiser for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Students donate change to the program.

Wilmot’s program ran through Feb. 18. The school’s goal was to raise $1,900. The fifth-grade volunteer committee helped promote the campaign.

Bergen Meadow’s program runs through Feb. 25. In the 10 years the school has participated, it has raised more than $16,000.

Have tips about schools in Evergreen? Contact Evergreen resident Deb Hurley Brobst at deb@evergreenco.com.