Thursday, May 24, 2007

A Star Is Born

Dawn and some of her buddies took to the stage tonight at Big Picture's mentor appreciation dinner. They did a few short skits of student stories about Big Picture. Dawn played a friend of hers coming to school on her birthday. She was funny!! She projected!

The performance was directed by members of Teatro Vista,a company dedicated to sharing Latino culture with a broad Chicago audience and co-founded by Henry Godinez of the Goodman. In only 16 weeks of a pretty short after school program, the less than a dozen young people put together a short show that reminded me of the early plays done by the Albany Park Theater Project, one of Chicago's finest youth theater ensembles.

The dinner was cooked and served by Big Picture seniors who have studied at Washburne Culinary Institute. The chicken was amazing, actually, really tender and savory. Dawn's most recent mentor, of Washburne, came and was greeted with lots of applause from the many students he has taught. He was pleased to hear about Dawn's at-home Hollandaise sauce making.

Big Picture is putting together a proposal to become a Renaissance 2010 contract school and serve more students. As sophomore Arlette pointed out tonight, "It's really sad that Gage Park is overcrowded by 1000 students and we can't take in any freshmen next year."

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