A Band of Angels Actress Denielle Gray gave us her reflections on what it was like to perform the musical for an audience full of students.
Each year, as part of our Send A Kid to Theater Campaign, we bring students from Title 1 School across all five boroughs of New York City to see our original, entertaining and enriching productions for free. The program has been a rousing success, as children who normally would not have the chance to experience the wonder of theater, get to have this irreplacable occurence.
However, it’s not only a wonderful experience for the students we serve, but also for the actors who get to perform for the students. Below, Denielle Gray, one of the stars of our last production, A Band of Angels, discusses what it was like to perform for approximately 800 school students.
“As an artist, your sole purpose is to inform, inspire, uplift and motivate. I was honored to have the privilege to expose younger generations to some of life’s most pertinent lessons via theater. It is said that children are the hardest audiences to perform for because they won’t lie! That statement proved to be true as my wonderful cast and I took these students on a journey of knowledge, discovery, truth and jubilation. Though engaged in telling the story, I watched as their faces lit up as we sang and unafraid they joined along with us. I saw them hurt and grieve with us at the realization that the Fisk University may close. But more importantly, I witnessed them rejoice and truly grasp the lesson that ‘Knowledge is Power.’ One of the most rewarding feelings is to have a child look at you and say ‘I want to be just like you when I grow up.’ Passion inspires passion and it was truly a blessing to share this compelling, applicable story to this generation.”
– Denielle Gray