This week I'm so happy to introduce you to Beth Auble, an extraordinary theatre educator and leader in Vanderbilt, Texas!
Beth, what’s a show that inspires you? (explain away!)
This one is hard for me. There are so many AMAZING shows out there to choose from. I love creative plays, plays that are funny, plays that make you think… I like being caught off guard. Like Urinetown, for example. A friend gave me tickets to go see it and I knew nothing about it. I was slightly disgusted by the title and was sure it was going to be full of potty humor. Well, it was, but not in the way I thought! It was charming and delightful and simply amazing. In college we did a production of The Magic Flute, the opera not the stage play, and as a worker in the costume shop I got to help make some of the most astonishing costumes I’ve ever seen made out of all recyclable materials.
What’s one of your happiest moments in theatre?
I opened the program at Sealy Jr. High as their first ever theatre teacher. They had been doing simple things for 'one act' directed by a math teacher. I decided I wanted to do plays that I liked and I was going to push them. 3 years after I first started teaching one of my 8th graders gave me a letter at the end of the year. In the letter, he told me about how our OAP his 7th grade year was his favorite play and he hoped in High School he could do more plays like that. The play: The Imaginary Invalid by Moliere. I was thrilled that he loved it as Moliere is my favorite playwright. Watching the kids start and gain an understanding of a more challenging text.
Last year, I was honored in my old district as well as in my current district by seniors. I was astonished and grateful. But the biggest thing for me was knowing that I had made a difference. Both students were pursuing theatre as careers and one as a theatre educator.
What’s the biggest ‘fail’ or goof you’ve seen on stage? (do tell the story)
Last year I almost came out of my seat when one of my students stuttered over a line he had clearly forgotten, then turned to us and said, “I’m sorry." UGH! I’ve seen walls come down, doors at contest come down…
Why do you love theatre?
I love theatre because it gives me a chance to be myself. Growing up there wasn’t any one thing that I was really good at. I was in Band. I was in Choir. I took Art classes, Yearbook, Photography, and yes, Theatre. As a teacher I tend to break out into song or I’ll draw something on the board and my loving kids will ooo and ahhh over it and ask why I don’t teach choir (I’m really not that good!) or why I don’t teach Art (nope, not that talented!) I just tell them I teach theatre because it is a place where all the things combine.
Theatre is for...
Only they who are crazy enough to constantly be creating worlds just to tear them down and start again.
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