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Filed under Opinion

How Can Theater Set You On A Path To Success?

Stella Wilkins shares her insight into why ALL students should take a theater course.

Theater+class+volunteers+at+Trick+or+Treat+Street+this+past+Halloween.
Theater class volunteers at Trick or Treat Street this past Halloween.

Theater class volunteers at Trick or Treat Street this past Halloween.

Photo by Carol Carota

Photo by Carol Carota

Theater class volunteers at Trick or Treat Street this past Halloween.

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To some of you, the idea of taking a theater class may have never even crossed your mind. To others, you may have thought about it and just never chose to pursue it for various reasons. But, despite previously conceived ideas, it’s one of the most helpful classes you can take in your high school career.

Most people aren’t thrilled by the idea of standing up in front of a class to perform a monologue from a different character’s point of view, but as someone who has taken the class, and discussed the importance of it with Ms. Carota herself, that’s not really what it’s about. “Becoming part of a theater class teaches the amateur actor not only the true essence of teamwork, but also assists in building confidence, public speaking and/or interview skills, and lays the foundation for self-awareness and true human interaction.” Ms. Carota went on to explain that “these skills are crucial for real world skills, such as networking, acclimating to new surroundings with new people, and providing young adults with the courage to take risks in new environments; combining assertion and assessment skills”.

There’s so much you can learn from theater, about yourself and how you, and the people around you, react in different situations. You become exceedingly self aware and disciplined, which are very important skills to have in supporting your future endeavors, as you are able to identify how to present yourself and effectively convey your purpose to various demographics. As my classmate, Jonathan, stated; ”Theater has taught [him] to get out of [his] comfort zone and explore new things, talk with new people and push for things [he] wants in life”.

Let’s face it, you’re going to have to do multiple presentations in college, and possibly even more in your career. Taking theater will teach you how to prepare yourself and to control your nerves during these presentations. In a recent study presented in Forbes Magazine, 70% of employed Americans say that presentation skills are critical to their success at work. “It’s a confidence booster,” said Emily, another classmate who has already seen the positive effects of the class, “it helps with public speaking, it makes you more comfortable with yourself and others around you, and teaches you how to put yourself out there”.

Pullquote Photo

More often than not, students learn so much about who they truly are and what they are really capable of accomplishing both in the classroom and in life.”

— Ms. Carol Carota (Theater teacher)

Additionally, the vast globalization of our world thanks to technology, has created an even more competitive work environment. As a result, the need for networking has become imperative. Theater teaches you how to present yourself confidently, project your ideas, and listen to others. As a performer you are forced to learn how to be in the moment and really pay attention to everything going on around you, all while maintaining your focus and composure. These skills are essential in networking as you are dealing with many different people and trying to make good impressions. These skills can also be easily carried over into interviews, which could mean the difference between you getting the job or not. Based on an article published in the NYTimes “How To Hire The Right Person” by Adam Bryant, employers are much more likely to hire someone who communicates well and is able to think on their feet creatively. Again, theater will help to teach you these skills, so long as you’re willing to learn.

Theater isn’t for everyone, this is known, but I sincerely urge you to try it out, if not for the love of the arts, for that extra edge in the real world. As Ms. Carota said, “more often than not, students learn so much about who they truly are and what they are really capable of accomplishing both in the classroom and in life.” If you’re looking for an elective to take, you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain by choosing theater.

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About the Writer
Stella Rae Wilkins, Staff Reporter, Co-Anchor, Photographer
Gr. 12 “You must strive to find your own voice because the longer you wait to begin, the less likely you are going to find it at all.” -John Keating
2 Comments

2 Responses to “How Can Theater Set You On A Path To Success?”

  1. Sam on November 6th, 2017 6:15 pm

    I’m still shy but theater and Carota definitely helped give me skills with interaction few other classes have. Definitely a course to take if you want to come out of your shell a little bit.

    [Reply]

  2. Andres on November 6th, 2017 9:39 pm

    YES STELLA!!! This was such an amazing article and I loved how you highlighted a topic that most people don’t think about!

    [Reply]

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How Can Theater Set You On A Path To Success?