Student Ambassadors, Campbell from Oshkosh North High School and Shala from De Pere High School, are program representatives for the 2023-24 Center Stage High School Musical Theater Program. Campbell and Shala have shared their experiences with the program and written this blog as guest writers of the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center.
A bit about the interviewers:
I’m a sophomore at Oshkosh North High School. I’m involved in everything choir-related: choir council, acapella (the sophomore girl choir), the treble and spartan choir (freshman choir), fermata-nowhere (our advanced acapella group) and madrigals. I also play Lavender in my school’s musical Roald Dahl’s Matilda the Musical. I absolutely love the environment in the choir. Everyone can sing, and no one judges because there’s an unspoken mutual agreement that a person’s voice is their identity. I can remember in the earliest times music was something I always held dear to me. I remember going to one of my first musicals at the Fox Cities P.A.C. back in 2016, Disney’s The Lion King. I knew the actors weren’t real lions and animals on stage, but it truly felt like they were. This opened my eyes to the world of music. Singing is therapeutic to me; it allows me to fully express my feelings or emotions in that moment that can’t be put into words. The Center Stage Program stood out to me because it focuses on building skills that are helping me become the performer I want to be!
I’m a senior at De Pere High School. I love everything about the arts: music, dancing, acting and crafts. I’m very active in musical theater and show choir but in my free time, I love to scrapbook and crochet. Creating things from crocheted sweaters to characters on stage is my passion.
I applied for the Student Ambassador Program because I wanted to learn more about careers in a field where I have an outlet for one of the biggest parts of my identity: my creativity. I learned so much about how I can apply this skillset to theater, especially in the realm of marketing and design. My favorite Fox Cities P.A.C. workshop I attended was led by a costumer in the touring production of Disney’s Aladdin in the 2022-23 Season. They talked about all the intricate details that went into making and designing the costumes, including selecting the right fabrics and materials. This excited me because it sounded like a wide-open door for artistic experimentation.
Now, on to the interview! First, Shala started with questions for Campbell.
S: Why did you want to be a part of the Student Ambassador Program?
C: The Student Ambassador Program was exactly what I wanted to pursue. I love singing and acting but I believe that the performing arts is nothing without the people in the background making sure everything goes smoothly.
S: Yes, I agree. The Student Ambassador Program does a phenomenal job inviting us to explore so many aspects of the performing arts! What are you most looking forward to being a part of the Student Ambassador Program?
C: I am really looking forward to building more friendships with my other ambassadors.
S: It is very exciting to get to know more people outside of school interested in performing arts! Who is your biggest performing influence?
C: My biggest performing influence would be my choir teacher. They could be given a difficult piece of music in a choir of people who have never seen a music staff before, and it’d still be beautiful. I aspire to have such confidence and leadership in music, and it inspires me.
S: That is a very sweet answer; I have so much appreciation for my choir teacher as well! Thank you for your responses, Campbell.
Now, on to Campbell’s questions for Shala.
C: What about the Student Ambassador Program is the most fun to you so far?
S: For me, the most fun part of the Student Ambassador Program is attending shows and doing Instagram takeovers for the Fox Cities P.A.C.’s Center Stage Program account! Coming up with live interview questions and different content ideas with a group of peers is an excellent way I’ve found to connect with my fellow ambassadors and find creative ways to market the show.
C: I am also very excited about doing all of that as well. Onto the singing aspect of the Center Stage Program, are singing and the performing arts special to you? If yes, how so?
S: Singing and acting are special to me because they each allow for unique forms of expression while also working together sometimes. The way each one can be used to tell a story in different ways is interesting to me. Dialogues and monologues have a different effect than songs, but both allow for distinct creative risks, which I appreciate.
C: What specific musical/play do you believe describes you and why?
S: A musical that I would say describes me is Legally Blonde. Even though I am not blonde myself, I really love the message that marching to the beat of your own drum is an asset. I carry the message of Elle’s authenticity to herself wherever I go.
To learn more about the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Program in its eighth year, watch for more blogs on foxcitiespac.com/our-stories.
Thank you to the Center Stage High School Musical Theater Program Corporate Partner, Fox Communities Credit Union.
Written by Center Stage High School Musical Theater Program Student Ambassador guest writers,
Campbell (Oshkosh North High School) and Shala (De Pere High School)