Welcome to Agrabah!

What an absolute blast this past weekend was! The First Redeemer Conservatory performed Aladdin, Jr. and it was simply spectacular!  I know I may be a bit biased, but seriously - there aren't adequate words to describe this year.  I'll give it my best shot though!

This was my fifth production with the FRC Conservatory of Music and Fine Arts Drama Class.  I can say without a doubt, this year really took the cake!   I looked forward to every class.  Tech week and production went smoothly. And, in the same amount of time as years past, we were able to pull off Annie (the elementary class production), the full Aladdin Jr. production, and a condensed JTF (Junior Theater Festival) competition performance.  We won an international award!  Not to mention, we had about 20+ extra kids than years past.  So, how did we do it?

1.  God Almighty:  He was the focus and center of everything we did.  We give Him glory for it all and continuously ask for His direction in all things.  We opened class with prayer.  We took time to study His word with the kids.  And, when extra prayer was needed, class stopped - and we prayed.  When decisions needed to be made, we sought Him first.  And, let me tell you, He showed up and showed out all year!  Thank you, Jesus, for blessing our program!  Thank you for allowing  us to reach families for Christ through musical theater.  What a fun way to serve!

2. A selfless leader: Katy loves the Lord, has a heart for kids, a creative mind, and a gift for teaching.  Put that together and you have one powerful punch in a tiny package that is Katy Cook.  She is quiet and humble.  She has never asked for recognition or been filled with pride.  She simply seeks to find the best in every single student and does what it takes to pull it out of that child.  As a mom, I'm incredibly grateful for what she has done for my children.  At the beginning of the year Audrey wouldn't speak.  She was the last to audition and we had to pull it out of her.  By the end of the year, she was the first to volunteer to stand up in class and improv with classmates.  She also had her first speaking role and solo in a performance.  Same with my youngest - who has now decided she wants to "be a singer".  She auditioned for a solo for another musical for the first time - and got it!  Life changing?  You bet!  As a choreographer, Katy was a joy to work with.  She's encouraging, supportive, and down right fun to be around!

3. Team Effort: This is certainly not a one man show.  Our leadership team met before the season began. We prayerfully considered the show and began to brainstorm about what we needed to do to make this the best we could for the kids.  We made a plan and we stuck to it!  Everything was thought out and organized before class ever started.  We communicated regularly and stayed on top of everything thanks to some incredibly organized and administratively gifted people.

One of my favorite things about the entire year was the way the kids showed their leadership.  They were taught how to lead and they put those skills in action when needed. When the elementary kids were having their production, the entire back stage process was lead by the older kids.  We went back stage at one point to make sure that the kids weren't running around crazy and what we found was all 19 first through fifth graders sitting quietly in their chairs as the older kids were kneeling with them and praying for their fears and nerves to be tamed.  Wow!  It doesn't get any better than that!  And, I will also say that the throughout the "big" production, the leadership continued.  What an incredible blessing this Mama has been given knowing that these are the kids my daughters look up to.

So, here's one last plug - if you're looking for a program for your child (first through twelfth grade) where they will be loved, taught, supported and encouraged - look no further.  The productions on stage will far exceed your expectations.  And, your child will learn far more than how to sing, dance, and act.  FRC Conservatory has gotten back to its mission focus - bringing kids closer to Christ through the art of musical theater.

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