Last week I wrote about my early experiences in the theater--from kindergarten Pilgrim pageants to high school musicals and operettas. And nothing in college until my senior year, when some friends and I wrote Remember the Alamo, a silly satirical musical.
I mentioned too that I stumbled into doing plays at the middle school level quite by accident--a bus-scheduling snafu left time at the end of the school day for activities. Drama Club was born. And my students and I wrote The Founding of Aurora; or, The Grapes of Wrath, which we produced in the spring of 1967. This began a tradition of some years. Below, I've listed all the productions I did in Aurora between 1967-1996 (I retired in January 1997).
- Spring 1967: The Founding of Aurora; or, The Grapes of Wrath.
- 24 May 1968: Our War for Independence; or, 101 Ways to Be Revolting
- 29 May 1969: The Adventures of Robin Hood; or, The Man with the Green Robber Band
- 15-16 May 1970: The Lewis and Clark Expedition; or, Come with Me on the Swan Boats
- 15-17 May 1974: The Roaring Twenties; or, How the St. Valentine's Day Mess Occurred
- Fall 1974: The Harmon Revue
- 16-17 May 1975: The Disappearance of Rory Wildroot; or, You Have to Stay Up Pretty Late at Night to Catch a Kid Napping
- 15-16 April 1976: The Periwinkle Perplex
- Winter 1977 (?): You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown
- 2-3 December 1982: E. T., Phone Harmon!
- 20-21 May 1983: Snoopy (sequel to You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown)
- 9-10 December 1983: Murder on Bus 10
- 24-25 February 1984: A Night at the Theaters, I
- 9-10 November 1984: Billy the Kid (originally produced, Spring 1979--while I was teaching at Lake Forest College)
- 18-19 May 1984: The 88th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show (the first of an annual series of shows)
- 18-19 January 1985: You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown
- 31 May-1 June 1985: The 89th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 14-15 March 1986: Dracula, Baby
- 30-31 May 1986: The 90th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 11-12 December 1987: A Night at the Theaters, II
- 12, 13, 14 March 1987: Grease (at Aurora High School)
- 11-12 December 1987: A Night at the Theaters, III
- 18-19 March 1988: Luann
- 3-4 June 1988: The 92nd Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 9-10 December 1988: Funky Winkerbean
- 9, 10, 11, 12 March 1989: The Merry Wives of Windsor (at Aurora High School--its first full-length play by Shakespeare)
- 2-3 June 1989: The 93rd Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 1-2 June 1990: The 94th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 31 May-1 June 1991: The 95th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 29-30 May 1992: The 96th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
- 31 May-June 1 1996: The 2000th Annual 8th Grade Farewell-to-Harmon Show
As you can tell, most of these productions I wrote with students--or by myself (all the 8th grade farewell shows). For some reason, I do not have--or cannot find--the program for the original production of Charlie Brown--so any FB friends out there who have it? Lemme know!
Tomorrow--Some comments about the shows--what they meant to me ... and mean ...