It’s impossible to measure just how much Studio B in Highland Village helps mold, shape, and develop the young people in the community. Neither is there a way to determine how much Studio B, a stalwart pillar in the area since 1999, contributes toward uniting the community and bringing families together. People of all ages look to the theater as a special space for learning, growing, building confidence, self-esteem, and leadership. And, the cherry on top of all that, is the pure joy and fun generated through the theater dynamics.
There is a sense of passion running through Studio B. They are focused on creativity and solid family interactions. They stretch in all directions pertaining to theater and seek, more than anything else, to serve the members of their community.
Studio B set sail in 1999 as a youth theater, teaching both theater classes and youth workshops. They faced the challenge of their first community production in 2001. The Littlest Angel was the venue, and the cast members were as young as six through adulthood.
“That may sound difficult,” said Jarrette Moore.” But we were trying to achieve something that would, hopefully, set the tone for Studio B. We envisioned the parents and grandparents of our children and youth getting on the stage and performing alongside their kiddos.”
It was a brilliant idea, and it worked. What better way to encourage the development of strong family bonds than by allowing the generations to join forces in a creative adventure? As a rule, the shows chosen for production are fun and energetic.
No one involved with Studio B wanted to limit the creativity of the performances, which is why, in 2006, they began to consistently direct their vision toward all things theater for all ages. Children as young as four are allowed to participate. That year was actually a watershed year since it also marked the very first adult production for cast members 18-years-old and up. The production was Nunsense, and, once again, it marked another success. Today, the oldest cast members are in their 70s.
The workshops, which are plays/musicals that include performances, proved to be effective formats for Studio B. Classes, workshops, and productions are all used as tools to create an atmosphere of creativity, imagination, collaboration, and independent thinking. Just as important is the fact that these are the same tools used to unite families and to bring communities together.
One of the biggest thrills for those involved with Studio B is watching creativity develop both independently and collectively. Many students discover true talents and satisfaction in acting, musical theater, voice, dance, script development, and all-around knowledge of the stage and theater. Many also manage to nurture the necessary confidence to actually pursue these areas as a career.
“We truly want it to continue working, and we’re willing to put in the effort for it to become better and better. It’s good for all of us,” Moore said.
The Nellie Awards became a part of Studio B in 2010, turning into a fun way to recognize the best in several categories. Included are best actress/actor, best dancer, best silly face, best tech, best laugh, best silly face, best voice, and many more.
One day, if her self-confidence can moan and groan through some growing pains, we may see Jarrette standing proudly on the stage and holding her very own Nellie. Just sayin!
photos courtesy of Jarrette Moore