Attending a performance of Tuck Everlasting was a reminder, once again, that we are incredibly fortunate to be living in such an amazingly talented and creative community.
Like many of the Decorah High School and New Minowa Players performances before it, this musical was one of the finest, most professional productions I have seen anywhere. All the leads were outstanding actors and incredible vocalists, and the rest of the nearly 100 students involved in singing, dancing, orchestration, lighting, costume-making, set construction, back-stage work and numerous other pieces of the action helped stage an experience that will long be remembered. Special notice should be given to the lighting design, the costuming, and the choreography as well as the singing and acting, all of which were simply breathtaking.
It should be noted also that developing such talent begins in Decorah long before high school. We are fortunate to have great music and acting opportunities in the primary grades and strong support for the arts in all of Decorah’s schools, and by now a very large cadre of talented youth began honing their passion at a very young age under the superlative skill of Kristen Underwood at Upstart Crow, who also directed this rendition of Tuck.
And in addition to Kristen’s continued work with New Minowa Players and the schools, we have the added good fortune that she is now director of Campus Programming at Luther College where, in collaboration with Jenifer Ward, Luther’s new highly engaged president, Luther programming will be increasingly integrated into our community at large.
Of course I am essentially wrong to call all of this “luck.” We are so blessed because of the hard work and dedication of so many people in our schools and community -just reviewing the Tuck program hints at how many people and how much time it takes to put on such a sophisticated production -and because of the incredible support of parents and community members who participate behind the scenes, encourage their kids to excel, or just show up to fill the High School auditorium FOUR times to enjoy and applaud the results.
We all deserve to thank one another for our many parts in making such a vibrant community possible.
David Cavagnaro Decorah