Friends of the Arts
Mt. Greylock Friends of the Arts
Welcome to the Friends of the Arts -- a parent organization whose mission is to support and promote arts education at Mt. Greylock. We do this through a variety of activities including volunteering for events, providing financial support for school arts activities through a mini-grant program for teachers, and conducting fundraisers.
We have recently finished taking orders for beautiful fresh citrus fruit, which will be shipped straight to us from Florida very soon. The order deadline for this wonderful fresh fruit was November 14th! If you missed ordering, but still want to buy fruit, we plan on selling some extra boxes at the Holiday Walk Penny Social, this coming Saturday, Dec. 1st.
Last year, FOA supported a number of activities. Some of these were:
- Fall Festival of Shakespeare – Richard III
- High School Musical – Wonderful Town
- Spring Play – Pass the Butler
- Middle School Musical - Alice in Wonderland
- A trip to MassMoca for art students
- All the art and music teachers at MGRHS
These activities were quite an accomplishment for all involved, and FOA was pleased to be part of making such opportunities possible. Additional support, monetary and otherwise, is provided to student theatrical performances throughout the year. Our school community is fortunate to be home to a consistently talented group of visual and performing arts students and teachers. We are pleased whenever possible, to support them in their efforts. If you have a child who is an active participant, or a child who just wants to put a "toe in the water" to try it out, we welcome you and hope you will join us in our efforts to support all the arts at Mt. Greylock Regional High School.
One of the ways that the Friends of the Arts raises money to support these wonderful activities is by producing a cover for all 9 of the performing arts events during the school year. Money is raised by selling advertising to local businesses. These ads are assembled into a colorful booklet which wraps around each program on 15 evenings from September to June. If you know of a business that would like to be represented in this program cover, please contact the Friends of the Arts below.
Fall Festival of Shakespeare
This year marks the 24th anniversary of Shakespeare and Company's collaboration with area high schools known as the Fall Festival of Shakespeare. Mt. Greylock is one of the founding schools in that glorious partnership. A Midsummer Night's Dream, this year's play under the direction of Josh McCabe, was a magical production on the Mount Greylock stage. Fairies, lovers, working stiffs, and government leaders, all figure in the plot of this Shakespeare comedy. We are quite fortunate to have both strong older students and a large group of younger students contributing to this effort.
Each year, soon after the start of the school year, auditions and rehearsals for the Shakespeare play begin; and their work is presented to the Mt. Greylock community in mid-November. This is followed a week later by the amazing festival run at Shakespeare and Company's Founders theatre in Lenox, where all of the participating high schools present their plays in an excitement-charged weekend of high spirits and mutual support. The inclusive, non-competitive atmosphere allows students from the different schools to get to know each other and build networks through the county and beyond. All Mt. Greylock students are invited to try out, so be sure to mark your calendar for next years' Fall Festival!
Last year, on February 12th, we honored St. Valentine's Day to support the Fall Festival of Shakespeare at the Food of Love, a celebration of Shakespeare, love and CHOCOLATE! Featuring many of the Fall Festival performers and friends, this year's extravaganza of poetry, music, and dance offered scenes from many plays which have dealt with "Potions". Sumptuous chocolate desserts and confections are featured each year, as the students present many of the bard's famous love scenes, as well as scenes of love by other authors. Songs and instrumental music round out the program. There was also a chinese auction featuring theater tickets from local companies, such as Williamstown Theater Festival, Barrington Stage, and Shakespeare & Co., in addition to gift certificates from 1896 House Pub, and Hudson's in North Adams, and passes to MassMoCA. All proceeds go the the Friends of the Arts to help support next year's Fall Festival of Shakespeare.
Tickets are available at the door, as well as at Wild Oats, and Where’d You Get That? in Williamstown, Country Tack in Lanesborough, and I Got Goodies, in North Adams. Ticket prices, which include both the dessert buffet and the performance, are $25 for adults, $18 for seniors, and $15 for students.
High School Musical
This year's musical at Mt. Greylock will be Oklahoma! a landmark musical using the plot of the story "Green Grow the Lilacs". This early "book musical", by the famous musical theater team Rogers and Hammerstein, is set in Oklahoma Territory, just after the turn of the twentieth century. The performance dates will be March 7th, 8th, and 9th. The High School musical auditions happen each January, as a cast and pit orchestra are assembled to mount each production. The musical is always one of the most popular entertainments of the school year.
All was not as it seemed within the English country home of Sir Robert Charles, Minister of Defense last May. Sir Robert is no longer an active force in politics; indeed his inactivity has become a well-nigh insoluble difficulty. Eric Idle's play called Pass the Butler, was last year's Spring Drama, performed on May 11th & 12th. This comedy is a wonderful Monty Pythonesque parody on the classic British Country House drama, and Detective Mystery drama all in one. The seniors each year choose and direct a spring play, surprising us with their choices and abilities.
Have you found your Muse? Mount Greylock's energetic students have founded a club for the arts, called Muse. Look for the next meeting to be announced on the calendar.
Baking is Beautiful
Are you willing to bring irresistible baked goodies or cold drinks for our bake sales during theatre productions? Cups and napkins will also be needed. Or would you be willing to help at the ticket table before the show and during intermission? If so, please contact Friends of the Arts! Thanks for the help!
Mini-grants to teachers We are again offering arts mini-grants to teachers. Please contact Abby Reifsnyder at firstname.lastname@example.org with any proposals.
Board members: Hilary Bashara: email@example.com, Deb Brothers: firstname.lastname@example.org, Paula Consolini: email@example.com, Michael and Ellen Dilthey: firstname.lastname@example.org, Moira Jones: email@example.com, or Abby Reifsnyder: firstname.lastname@example.org.