This marks the first school year that the John Legend Theater has been in use by the community.
IN-DEPTH: Thousands utilize John Legend Theater in venue’s first school year
Theater manager Terry McGonigle previously said there were more than 120 events held at the theater just in the 2017-2018 school year.
Although Smith isn’t new to acting, last week was her first time performing at the John Legend Theater.
“It’s really cool to have the opportunity to perform in here,” she said.
Dederich said having a state-of-the-art theater only adds to the kids’ learning experience.
“We get to practice more of being back stage and seeing the stage lights out there,” she said. “They learn a little bit more about the actual theater.”
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Kids who participated in the camp came from all experience levels — newcomers to veterans.
“At the end of the day, if they’re louder and more confident than they were on Monday — goal’s accomplished,” Dederich said.
There were also STEM-related activities at the camp for kids who were interested in lighting, acoustics and other behind-the-scenes facets.
“It shows they don’t have to be the main character to enjoy stage and shows,” said Rene Stratton, Career ConnectED program coordinator.
The program at the theater was funded by the Springfield Foundation and the Springfield City School District.