Final goodbye to starlight theatre president Nadia Petru


Photo Courtesy of Nadia Petru

HANGING THE BANNER: As president of the Starlight Theatre Company, senior Nadia Petru was very involved in all aspects of theatre, from acting to helping set up for plays. Petru will be attending UT Austin this upcoming year, studying fort a Bachelor of Science in a Communications degree, and will additionally be participating in television and film programs.

Kate Davis, Managing Editor

Looking out into the ecstatic crowd, feeling the heat of the stage lights, senior Nadia Petru completes her final theater performance with the Starlight Theater Company.

Petru joined the theater program as a freshman, and has spent her years in the company participating in numerous productions, as both an actress and member of the tech crew.

“It’s been a great learning experience,” Petru said. “It’s been really tough because of all the challenges that I feel like normally wouldn’t happen in a regular four-year time period. However, I learned a lot about myself and about who I want to be and how I want to work. And I also had some of the best times of my life with all my really close friends.”

For her senior year, Petru was named the Starlight Theater Company President and used the opportunity as a way to expand her theatrical knowledge into more behind the scenes work.

“I also started to explore stage management which is a lot of leadership and communication with other people,” Petru said. “I liked the idea of being able to help a lot of people, and being a central person for the program. You have to communicate with the directors, your classmates, and every different part during a show. I liked being the central person that allowed that.”

Many of the cast members supported Petru as president, and found her to be a strong leader for the program.

“Nadia handled her presidency very well,” senior Sara Caballero said. “I never saw her get frustrated or lash out at anyone. She was very friendly to all and very easy to work with. She was very good at balancing her many responsibilities and handled everything with an amazing amount of patience and class. She liked to have fun but knew exactly when and how to get work done.”

Throughout the four years Petru spent in the theater program, she found a tight-knit community among her fellow company members.

“We have really late rehearsals, and when we would be leaving them with everybody walking together to their cars, everyone’s tired. Everyone’s just a little bit delirious,” Petru said. “So, always walking out of a rehearsal with everybody is always really fun. It’s something that I remember doing all four years and thinking that these are my people. Those were really good moments.”

Prior to joining the company at Bowie, Petru participated in middle school theater productions, allowing her to form connections with cast-mates far before reaching the high school program.

“My fondest memory with Nadia is probably when we were playing counterparts as Paulette in the production of Legally Blonde Junior in eighth grade,” senior Megan Sewell said. “It’s always great to work with her in shows, and that particular production was really fun.”

Alongside her work with the Starlight Theater Company, Petru has participated in productions done outside of Bowie.

“I did Zilker Hillside Theater last year, which was a great experience, and I plan to do it this year for the summer as well,” Petru said. “Last year, their musical was Newsies and this year it’s Matilda, which I applied for. During the school year I did a show with Jarrett Productions, which is a production company in East Austin.”

Petru plans to continue her education at the University of Texas (UT), to receive a Bachelor of Science in a communications degree, specifically radio, television, and film programs.

“I like the idea of going somewhere close and being with my family, and I love Austin as a city so much,” Petru said. “I’m excited to meet new people. I’m excited for a new routine. Getting put into a new school and a new living situation. It’s definitely really scary, but I am ready to get into it.”

Though the transition into her university life, Petru feels conflicted about leaving Bowie and the Starlight Theater Company.

I believe I have done every show in the past four years for the Starlight Theatre Company, except the very first one my freshman year.

— Nadia Petru, Senior

“Sometimes I’m like, I just like I got to go, It’s time to leave. I’m ready for the next step,” Petru said. “But then other times I just sit in class and I’m like looking at all my friends and like all of the underclassmen that I’ve gotten really close with and I’m thinking about what am I gonna do without them. I think I’m excited for the future, but I’m definitely scared of change.”

As she begins to enter this new stage of life, Petru is aiming to live in the moment, and avoid getting caught up in the details of her future.

“I really just want to do a lot of stuff. I know that sounds broad but I feel like I have so many options,” Petru said. “I want to do the whole college experience and get all the knowledge that I need. I want to be able to do this for like four or five years and then if I’m bored of it, I want to be able to jump from different jobs and just try everything I possibly can in my career. My ‘fancy career’ of a lifetime.”