By Katie Donaghy
On Wednesday December 19th, the Garnet Valley Drama Club hosted their first sensory awareness performance. Kids ranging in all ages from Philly High Schoolers to our own Garnet Valley Elementary students were invited to have lunch and watch a performance of Seussical the Musical. All the kids that attended this performance were kids who had special needs. The lights and loud noises in most musical productions makes it hard for some kids to attend. Due to this, the Drama Club decided to create a safe space for kids to come see the performance without the overwhelming aspects of the production. The performance started off with the opening number “Oh The Thinks You Can Think”. Kids started dancing and singing in the audience and erupting into smiles. A paraprofessional commented saying, “The kids are so excited because a good majority of them have never seen a show.” After our show ended, Mrs. Arters had the band play the song again and the cast went into the aisles to dance with all the kids. Some kids even came onto the stage and danced with the leads.
After the performance, the cast members and the kids had lunch together in the cafeteria. The kids were excited to meet the characters from the show such as the Cat in the Hat and the Grinch. I spent my day singing with kids from all over Delaware County and Philadelphia, barely having time to eat my lunch because they were bursting with questions about what it is like to be in a play. A teacher from Philly told me, “I have never seen my kids like this. They almost never talk and usually keep to themselves. Not only are they having fun but they are really connecting with you. This will be a day they will never forget.” One of the girls from Springfield on her way out said, “I can’t wait to come back, when is our next play?” The day went better than we could have ever hoped and are excited to make this a yearly tradition.