Students bring book to life

KATHLEEN PHALEN-TOMASELLI kphalen-tomaselli@poststar.com  January 7, 2017

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At a stage reading January 7 at the Hudson River Music Hall, Rose Bowstead, a fifth grader from Hudson Falls Intermediate School, reads her part while fellow performers Tara Byrne, right, and Shelly Fairbanks, left, look on.

 

The performance was the culmination of a one-month pilot arts program with fourth- and fifth-graders from Hudson Falls Intermediate School. With the goal of creating their own interpretations of the book for performance and creating original music based on the book’s passages.

 

Under the guidance of “The Garden Raid,” book author John W. Nassivera and owner of the Hudson River Music Hall Jonathan Newell, theater director Garrett West and composer and musician Robert Bates met with the eight students for six creative sessions in December.

 

“My mission is to create community, one story at a time, by complementing the good our neighbors are doing,” John Nassivera said. “And so the good continues; I have been exploring the possibilities of how a book can come off its pages to achieve this.”

And that’s how the idea for the pilot project got its early start.

 

Along with a documentary about the program and the process, currently in production, Nassivera, who was an educator in New York City for over three decades, hopes to expand the concept of the original songs and staged readings.

 

Read the entire article at The Post Star.