MONROVIA, CA – Monrovia Unified’s Wild Rose School of Creative Arts has won the Disney Musicals in Schools grant, which provides students and teachers 17 weeks of training with theater professionals in preparation for a production of a Disney KIDS musical this spring.
The school is one of five Los Angeles County schools chosen for the honor.

“I am so proud that our school staff is being recognized for its dedication to our students, families, and surrounding community,” Wild Rose intervention specialist and play producer Sharon Naugle said. “We believe that students thrive when they are encouraged to express themselves in the arts.”

The award, administered through Center Theatre Group, provides the school with free performance rights, educational support materials and guidance from teaching artists trained by Center Theater Group and Disney Theatrical Productions.

“Our teachers will receive invaluable support and professional development in theater arts from professionals, including actors, choreographers, and musical directors,” Principal Leslie Rapkine-Miller said. “This type of training for our teachers will elevate our theater arts program. We feel incredibly lucky that we have been chosen.”

In addition to working with teachers, the teaching artists will work with a cast of about 50 students in third through fifth grade in all aspects of production, including tech, stage management, lighting, and sound. At the conclusion of the 17-week program, students will perform a number at the Ahmanson Theater in a production that showcases each of the five schools that were selected for the award.

“Our students will have the opportunity of a lifetime this April when they will perform a scene of Disney’s ‘The Lion King’,” Naugle said. “I cannot wait to see the audience’s reaction and the pride of our students as they bring this work to life on stage.”

Wild Rose has served the Monrovia community since 1912 and was re-dedicated as a creative arts school at the beginning of this school year.

“It’s exciting for our exceptional program at Wild Rose School of Creative Arts to be acknowledged with this award,” Board President Terrence Williams said. “It is truly a validation of the special, expanded options we provide for Monrovia’s families and will help us to do even more.

In addition to theater arts, Wild Rose offers programs for its students that include vocal music, show choir, dance, ceramics, band, and – beginning in 2019-20 – an English/Spanish Dual Immersion Program.

“The staff and students at Wild Rose are truly deserving of this opportunity,” Superintendent Katherine Thorossian said. “I am excited to see their growth through this process and for them to be able to showcase their talents to the community in their performances.”

111617_MUSD_Aladdin Practice: Students at Wild Rose School of Creative Arts practice for a production of Disney’s “Aladdin.”