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Students perform play for seniors before competition

COMMUNITY SERVICE: From left to right: Valerie Griggs, Kathleen Penton, Darlene Adams and Dean Shaw pose with the “Orphan Trains” play poster after High Tide Productions gave a special performance to members of the senior center. Photo by Dart Spiers

COMMUNITY SERVICE: From left to right: Valerie Griggs, Kathleen Penton, Darlene Adams and Dean Shaw pose with the “Orphan Trains” play poster after High Tide Productions gave a special performance to members of the senior center.
Photo by Dart Spiers

Members of the Senior Center of South Pearl River County visited Picayune Memorial High School Tuesday to watch a performance by the school’s drama club, High Tide Productions.
The students performed their rendition of “Orphan Trains,” a play written by Pearl River County playwright Deborah Craig.
The special performance was an intergenerational activity designed to promote interaction between the youth and seniors of the community.
“I believe the students and the senior citizens are our two most precious groups in the community,” said Picayune Superintendent Dean Shaw. Shaw added that Picayune School District will attempt to plan at least one activity a month in which the students interact with senior citizens, and said that a band performance for January was already in the works.
Director Valerie Griggs said she and her students were grateful and excited for the opportunity to perform for their visitors.
“These kids love to perform,” said Griggs, “This practice was a blessing for us.”
Tuesday’s midday play for the seniors came at a great time for High Tide Productions; it allowed them to practice their performance in preparation for an upcoming concert. They had another performance for the community on Tuesday night, and the group will be heading to Hattiesburg early Saturday morning to compete in the 2014 Mississippi High School Dramafest.
According to the rules of the competition, students must complete the play in 45 minutes or less. The allowed timeframe must include the orderly setup and disassembly of their set. High Tide Productions won first place in the event last year.
Upon the conclusion of Tuesday’s show, the seniors gave the students a standing ovation, and Senior Center Participants Coordinator Kathleen Penton thanked the group for their wonderful performance.
Senior Center Executive Director Darlene Adams said she was grateful that the high school and the center were able to coordinate a visit.
“This is great for the seniors and the students,” said Adams.