LUDLOW-It's a rather daunting challenge for the entire eighth grade class of Black River Middle School (BRMS)to tackle, but this group of budding scholars wanted to produce a school play about local history that would bring real, local residents of the past to life as modern stage characters.
After studying aspects of local history- and with the assistance of staffers at the Black River Academy Museum (BRAM)in Ludlow-the BRMS students expressed an interest in donning the dress and assuming the mannerisms of eras long past. And why not? What better way to relive local history than to explore the lives and times of real Windsor County residents.
BRAM, chartered in 1835, is a treasure chest of historical archives and facts. It's a good place to start researching the past of the Black River Valley region.
BRAM's old academy building was restored and transformed into today's museum making it the cultural hub of Windsor County.
Various local personal accounts, such as descriptions of the Great Flood of 1927 and the Blizzard of 1888, are just a tiny portion of the historical materials students are able to tap into locally. After weeks of research and fine tuning, students crafted a production that's worthy of any local historian.
For two performances this week only, 23 BRMS students will recreate the lives of long vanished residents of Ludlow, Mt. Holly and Plymouth; the students will present "People of the Past: An Historic Play", May 13-14, at Ludlow's Town Hall Auditorium at 7 p.m.
"People of the Past" was written entirely by, and will be preformed completely by, the middle school students.
Student Katie Cloutier, who appears with fellow classmates in the play, is excited about the production. She spent a lot of time researching her character. The same is true for Cami Stengel; she is also interested in history and drama.
The public is invited to come and learn more about the history of Windsor County-and you never know, you may see your great aunt, your great grandfather come to life on stage-live-this week.
Tickets to "People of the Past" may be purchased at the Ludlow Auditorium; adult tickets are $5 and students are $2. For information, call 228-5050.