All On Set With Verrado Theatre


President Gina Penuelas during the Drop Dead Juliet rehearsal. Drop Dead Juliet is student play directed by Penuelas herself. Photo by Jordan Argano.

Jordan Argano, VHS Writer

Step into the world of theater and performing arts by joining the Verrado Theatre Club. Theatre Club opens up new opportunities for those interested in everything that being in theater entails. The club meets every Tuesday in the Black Box from 3:05-4:00 p.m.

Theatre club is a very accepting, welcoming and diverse community. Everyone is very supportive and uplifting, and the activities during the club meetings really help everyone come together to connect and grow as actors.

¨[Theatre] Club is always focused in teaching its members useful theater skills that not only help them in a production, but also help them in real life,¨ Theatre Club President Gina Penuelas said.  ¨The club’s goal is to give each student confidence in themselves, their skills and teach them to communicate effectively, as well as think creatively and make quick decisions. We also want to create an environment where everyone is free to be themselves, as well as laugh and have fun through games and activities.¨

Former President Ava Peabody is a firm believer in the open community that theatre club provides. The club is very unique to Verrado in the sense that everyone is welcome, and that it is just a place to be yourself. Passing her presidency down to current president Gina Penuelas was bittersweet, but what she took away from theater club continues to influence her as she starts her new path at Columbia College Chicago.

¨After being in theatre for three years of my high school career, there are so many things I took away from it. It taught me leadership skills, communication skills, problem solving skills and how to be 100% genuine,¨ Ava Peabody said. ¨What you get out of it is what you put into it, so fully submerging myself in theatre completely altered my personality and definitely for the best.¨

You do not need any prior experience in theatre or performing arts to join the club. Having a background may be useful but everyone has an equal opportunity to learn and grow from each other.

¨I used to be really small in theatre and I didn’t know much about it at all,¨ club member and Vice President Sam Hinton said.  ¨Even though I was in middle school theater it [high school theater]  just wasn’t the same. As I got more involved, I learned it’s not a competition and everyone is there to support each other. You do not have to stay in the background; every role is important.¨

While theatre club is heavily rooted in creating strong actors and performers, they still play their role in giving back to the community. This does not only create better leadership skills but also brings the club members closer together while trying to make a positive change.

¨Theatre clubs role in school has mostly been focused on putting on productions for the student body to enjoy, but we are trying to find ways to reach our community and be more active in helping others,¨ Penuelas said. ¨During the Houston School supply drive, theatre club was one of the most involved in providing those [supplies], and in the past we have worked with the Angel foundations during Christmas.¨

If you are looking for a space to open up and be yourself, Theatre Club is the place for you. Everyone is welcome to learn, share, and grow from one another, while also diving deeper into the true meaning of what theatre embodies.