Romeo and Juliet: Restaurant Wars!

Today I got to see the girls in “Romeo & Juliet: Restaurant Wars!”- a spin on the Shakespearean classic tale. DH went to last night’s show, which was opening night and, from the sounds of it, a bit rough. Tonight’s show was really fantastic. O11 played Amy, Juliet’s BFF. S12 played Fryer Laurence, a chicken merchant.

Fryer Laurence
S12 as “Fryer Laurence”


This show was the final project for the homeschool theater class they’ve been doing since the fall. The class also included basic theater elements, set design and lighting, choreography, and improvisation. We will have one final class this term to celebrate the show and do a final Improv performance, possibly live-streaming online.



The girls performed in a play at the Dublin Grange Theatre this weekend. S11 played Pigeon, and O10 played Birdie in a rendition of Rumpelstiltskin. The play was excellent and they were very well-cast. Birdie is the serious, conscientious aunt of goofy Pigeon, who is about as bird-brained as they come.

In addition to performing in the show, S11 also did the artwork for the playbill, and the original painting was hung in the theatre.


A Spirit Of Giving Christmas Show

Today the girls participated in their dance studio’s Christmas show, “A Spirit of Giving”.

The show was originally supposed to be held at Struthers Middle School, but Struthers won their basketball division and had playoff games that would conflict with our show date, so the studio had to pick an alternate venue at quite the last minute.


Our alternate venue ended up being smaller, older, and not very well-equipped. There were a number of sound and lighting problems. The stage was not as wide or deep, and the opening number ended up squished into the back and side curtains. O9 was indignant as she was one of the dancers elbowed out of the spotlight.

In spite of the technical issues, the show was a good experience for the kids to do. They worked hard to rehearse and we enjoyed seeing them on the stage. O9 was in the opening number and a jazz routine, while S11 was in the opening number plus ballet and jazz numbers. S11 seems to have re-kindled her passion for dance and wants to do even more ballet, and possibly modern.

Music and Swim 1-31-14

Today we had our regular piano lesson in Canfield. S9 ran through the piece she will perform later tonight at her YSU recital (Pyramid Power) on Neyla’s big piano. She also learned about the pentatonic scale and practiced counting beats out loud. Nelya asked us to order the Bastien “Major Key Signatures” for additional music theory.

After piano, O8 had her regular violin lesson with Miss Tina.

Next, O8 had a swim lesson with Ms. Barb. In addition to laps, she worked on diving.

O swim lesson

In the evening, S9 performed her piece at Bliss Hall. It was a rather imposing venue, but she played perfectly. She does not seem fazed a bit by the spotlight.   2014-01-31 20.26.50

Strings Concert

Tonight, O7 performed with Tina’s strings camp students in a lovely concert. She joined the other elementary students in playing the Suzuki pieces up through and including Allegro. Papa and Grandma V came to watch, as did DH and S9, Uncle R, and Aunt S. She was very excited to have everyone come to see her perform- right up until she had to sit with the other kids to wait for their turn to go up. Then she got very nervous and said she didn’t think she wanted to do it. I told her she should do it, since she told Miss Tina that she would and that it was important to keep your word. She was fine and I saw her smiling at Papa a few times from the stage area while she played.

In addition to O7’s portion, we also enjoyed arrangements of the William Tell and 1812 Overtures, plus the Bach Double played by Tina and three other college-aged students. There was a quartet, and even a saxophone solo. Tina’s husband accompanied on piano and the entire concert was a very enjoyable affair.

Afterwards, we went out to eat and then got froyo at Menchie’s to celebrate.

Holiday Concert with YSO

Today was the kids’ big day- they performed a Christmas piece with the Youngstown Symphony Orchestra during the annual Holiday Pops concert. It was a real experience for them. Public performance aside, having a chance to play with a big symphony and under a renowned conductor was just amazing.

In the early afternoon, they went to a run-through (read: dress) rehearsal at the concert hall. It went very well, and helped them get out any butterflies they might have before the big night.

Here they are, tuning with Miss Tina and some of the other musicians in the green room, before the run-through:


Backstage, waiting to go on:


The group as they will look tonight:


Grandma and Grandpa came to see the rehearsal, along with Dad and Uncle Eric.


After rehearsal, we went home to get some supper and change clothes. Our friend from Italy, Michele, was in town, and he joined us for dinner and then came to the show.

Here are some of the ladies with Miss Tina, ready to go on stage:


The group:


The concert was a great success. After our kids performed “Stompin’ On The Housetop”, Mr. Fleischer (the YSO conductor) commented to the audience that all the YSO musicians were just like the kids once. Everyone starts somewhere.