Theatre SLC in Great Hands of Mr. Meischner
Written by Bryana Martinez, Senior Writer
This February coming up will mark the one-year anniversary of Mr. Meischner taking over as Director of the Theatre SLC. Over the past year, Mr. Meischner has the Theatre program headed in the right direction under his leadership.
As anyone taking on a new position would state, they went through many obstacles when they first took on their new position. Mr. Meichner states that his biggest obstacle was taking on the position during the middle of the year. As a result, he states that he “was not familiar with the demands of the position and sometimes was unsure of the work I was doing.” With the great support of the staff, he claims he was able to “grow into the role and hopefully lead the institute in the right direction.”
Last February, when Mr. Morrison became Principal of Hillcrest, it meant that his sister, Ms. Morrison, had to vacate her position as SLC Director of Theatre. The Department of Education has a strict policy in which administrators can not work with family members. As soon as Mr. Morrison took the position of being principal, Ms. Morrison had to stop working at Hillcrest and is now working at Forest Hills High School. Mr. Meichner then took Ms. Morrison’s position as Director, leaving him saddened that he lost a “wonderful colleague and friend.”
Despite the school’s loss -- Ms. Morrison was beloved and influential in building up the Theatre program the last decade -- Mr. Meischner was still excited about taking on his new position. The Theatre Institute works with the students that wish to study in the performing arts. They study many aspects along the lines of acting, scenery design and construction, script writing, directing and choreography, vocal music, and makeup and costume design. The Theatre students are encouraged to get involved in the real life theatre community. They are pushed to seek agent representation and to go to professional auditions.
Mr. Meichner hopes to continue to lead the Theatre SLC in the right direction. As of October 2014, the Theatre students will be performing in no less than four productions. However, the Theatre SLC will continue many of the traditions that have kept the institute successful. They will continue to host Open Mic Night and Poetry Slaps. They will also continue to work with the LEAP Program that works hard with the students in getting their original plays produced on Broadway.
Mr. Cubero, the Assistant Principal of History, believes that Theatre is in good hands with Mr. Meischner. “He is a model teacher who works to make the students better. He really cares about people and is working very hard to improve Hillcrest,” said Mr. Cubero.
Students and teachers in Theatre agree that Mr. Meischner is someone passionate about helping the students. “He is very hard-working and very humble. He has Hillcrest at heart,” said Mr. Mohammed, a Theatre Math teacher. Senior Stacy Mendoza feels that Mr. Meischner allows his students to take accountability for their actions. “He cares a lot about us. If he sees you are doing bad in class, he will make sure that you can’t participate on trips until your grades go up. He trusts you until you break that trust.” Stacy adds that she believes Mr. Meischner is doing “very well” with all of his responsibilities.
Mr. Meichner has many wonderful hopes for his SLC in three years. He hopes that within these next few years, the institute will “become a prime destination for Theatre students throughout the city.” He believes that if “we continue to work with other Theatre programs in the city and build strong relationships with them, the Theatre students here at Hillcrest will be known for not just their academic abilities, but for their great acting skills also.”