For some students at Dayton Intermediate School, taking Michele Crain’s theater class is an obvious choice.
“I really want to become an actor,” said Davis Donlin, 12. “It’s been my dream.”
For others, it has been a stretch.
“I was really shy, and I didn’t talk much. I wanted to get out of my shell,” said Karina Allen, 14. “It was a big success. I made a lot of friends.”
But for everyone, it’s a place to belong.
“It’s just a place where I can express myself and be who I am,” said Joey Martinez, 14. “We’re a drama family. There’s nothing else to it.”
The students are hoping to expand that sense of family to the community, seeking help to go to the Nevada Theater Festival on Feb. 6 and 7 at Damonte Ranch High School. The school is likely the first one in Lyon County to attend the festival, where they will compete in a series of monologues, scenes and a one-act play.
“What’s great about it is every child gets to perform,” Crain said. “It’s a way for them to showcase their talents. It’s a feeling of accomplishment, and it can just lead to so many opportunities for them.”
To raise money for the festival, the theater students will perform their acts at Winter Fest: Back in Black in the multipurpose room at Dayton Intermediate School at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $5.
Zoey Johns, 13, will be performing in a scene called, “Family Meeting.”
“I think it’s the funniest one out of all of them,” she said. “It’s about a girl who’s being replaced by a foreign-exchange student because she can’t dunk a basketball.”
Shykayna Soriano, 14, will be performing a monologue.
“You’ve got to put emotion, anger, physical, everything into it,” she said. “On stage, you just have to forget about everything. You put your mind aside, and you become your character.”
Winter Fest will conclude with the one-act play, “The Girl Who Was Asked to Turn Blue,” by Ev Miller.
Students say the play explores some underlying themes, including peer pressure and individuality. Maybe racism. But on one thing they all agree:
“The show is going to be the bomb,” said Yahayra Soriano, 12.