The Dispatch

Freshman makes time for tech theatre and speech

PROVIDING+PIZAZZ%3A+Alyssa+Shumaker+operates+the+fog+machine+to+add++are+to+the+UIL+show%2C+Violet+Sharp.+The+Violet+Sharp+production+cast+and+crew%27s+hard+work+did+not+go+unnoticed+at+competition+because+they+won+several+awards+including+the+Outstanding+Crew+award.
PROVIDING PIZAZZ: Alyssa Shumaker operates the fog machine to add  are to the UIL show, Violet Sharp. The Violet Sharp production cast and crew's hard work did not go unnoticed at competition because they won several awards including the Outstanding Crew award.

PROVIDING PIZAZZ: Alyssa Shumaker operates the fog machine to add are to the UIL show, Violet Sharp. The Violet Sharp production cast and crew's hard work did not go unnoticed at competition because they won several awards including the Outstanding Crew award.

Photo by: Kaitlyn Zellner

Photo by: Kaitlyn Zellner

PROVIDING PIZAZZ: Alyssa Shumaker operates the fog machine to add are to the UIL show, Violet Sharp. The Violet Sharp production cast and crew's hard work did not go unnoticed at competition because they won several awards including the Outstanding Crew award.

Shelby Kelly, Sports Editor

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Yet another rehearsal recorded on her hour sheet. Many days spent hovering over her script, line after line, calling her cues and hearing the ‘thank you’ crackle from her team member on the other side of her headset. Another late night, but only joy fills the eyes of freshman Alyssa Shumaker because she is one step closer in helping the show come together.

Many underclassmen choose to begin their high school journey with a focus on getting acclimated. Shumaker is an exception since she has put countless hours into technical theatre and speech. This hard work and dedication has allowed Shumaker to acquire a spot in the UIL company for theatre, advance to state in speech all the while maintaining high grades in all pre-AP classes.

“It was a little bit of an adjustment to have so much on my plate, especially since right now since UIL and speech have been getting bigger and more competitive,” Shumaker said.

Technical theatre teacher Hannah Huerta believes Shumaker’s attitude will lead to further accomplishments.

“She has a good attitude which I think is the most important tool to have to be successful,” Huerta said. “If you have the drive, the work ethic, and the positive attitude, those three things alone make you successful.”

In her first year she has done a number of things including managing the stage, running sound, participating in duet action for speech and debate and she is currently the assistant stage manager and scenic designer for UIL.

“So far the best experience has been UIL because I think I’ve gotten to dabble in so many different things,” Shumaker said. “The different aspects of the show has helped me grow as a technician.”

Photo by: Gigi Francis
STAGE MANAGING: Alyssa Shumaker breaks dry ice for the fog machine. The machine was used to add suspense in Violet Sharp policemen and a dead baby in the woods.

Making a impact on people around her, Shumaker has helped fellow technician junior Joe Morales prepare for shows.

“She was there for me a lot, especially during our UIL show because I struggled with my organization and making sure everything was getting done when it needed to be done,” Morales said.

Although Shumaker is heavily involved in both activities, advancing to state in speech, making it to the third round in duet acting and advancing with the UIL company for theatre, each beast poses a different challenge.

“Speech is a very different environment just because we perform in smaller rooms and smaller crowds, usually just judges and a few people watching, the environment makes me a lot more calm,” Shumaker said.

During the fast paced seasons, it is important for Shumaker to establish relationships with her directors, so each project she works on can be the best it can be.

“Alyssa is so wonderful to work with because she is so calm and understanding and attentive and so it is really easy for me to speak with her as an adult one on one,” Huerta said.

Through her participation and devotion, she has left an impression on many just in her first year at high school.

“I can definitely see her going far at Bowie, I think the fact that we are already starting to groom her says a lot about how much faith her directors put into her and how they see her,” Morales said.

Shumaker is eager to continue her time in each program.

“I think it would be cool to continue speech all four years, and if I continue my goal is to be captain,” Shumaker said. “In technical theatre I want to continue to be apart of lots of productions, and I’d love to get an officer position when I am an upperclassman.”

From her love of being a technician in middle school, to her current position in UIL and her advancement to state for speech, Shumaker plans to grow more as she gains more experience.

“It’s kind of crazy [because] I feel like I’ve been given so many opportunities this year, it has been a really great experience,” Shumaker said. “I really hope to continue in these things in my next years at Bowie.”

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Freshman makes time for tech theatre and speech