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Our World Is A Mess

Posted 18 August 2017 12:00 AM by Ryan Howland

Is one of the opening lines to the 2017 City Spotlights Teen Leaders' final showcase performance "Millenial High." This felt so true this past weekend watching the events of Charlottesville unfold, and seeing the affect hatred, bigotry, and violence have on our world. I walked into the Shubert Theatre Monday morning shell-shocked, as I know many of my colleagues were, but what I walked into was much more powerful than anything happening outside. The Teen Leaders were singing, dancing, playing the same beats on the keyboard that we've been hearing for weeks. They were celebrating. This was Final Showcase week. They had their scripts, and it was time to put on an incredible show.

Getting "Millenial High" on its feet was not without its challenges. Wrangling almost 60 teenagers on stage while making sure the story and characters are clear, and everything runs smoothly is not an easy task, but these Teen Leaders were up for the challenge. They processed and incorporated all the feedback we gave them to elevate their show to a professional quality. It was truly inspiring to watch them take their artistry to the next level.

When it was finally showtime, we all couldn't have felt more relieved. Their performances were incredible, and the sense of community, family, and love I saw on that stage was overpowering. At one moment, as I was watching and cheering from the balcony, I took in the whole situation around me. The teens were right. Outside this space, our world IS a mess. But right here, in this theatre, they can make it better, one Teen Leader at a time.

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