Hickory Ridge High School Drama Club to hold its first ever Family Movie Night

By Christie Barlow
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While most of North Carolina is enjoying temperatures in the 70s, students at Hickory Ridge High School are preparing for a white Christmas.

On Friday, Dec. 14 at 7 p.m., the Hickory Ridge drama department will hold a Family Movie Night in the auditorium. Visitors will get a chance to view Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas” on a movie theatre style big screen. The event is free and open to the public but donations are welcome.

“It gives us the opportunity to let the community know we’re the Hickory Ridge drama club and raise money for the club,” said A.J. Rupp, the vice-president of the drama club. “I’ve never seen the movie before, but I heard it’s pretty good.”

Visitors will be treated to an entire night of holiday fun. Poinsettias will be on sale with prices starting at $10. In addition to the plants, carolers performing classic holiday songs will greet visitors and keep them entertained before the start of the movie.

“We’re not official singers, we’re just going to do our best to serenade the season,” said Melanie Elicker, the drama teacher at Hickory Ridge. “Well be singing things like ’Here Comes Santa Claus,’ and ’Jingle Bells;’ family friendly jingles.”

The Christmas carols won’t just get people in the mood for a holiday film, it will also serve to give the drama students a chance to get on stage and practice their craft. It’s an opportunity to get over stage fright and a chance to get comfortable performing, Elicker said.

Students are looking forward to the performance as well. Rupp is hoping to hone his craft on stage and hear the applause from the audience.

“It allows us to make other people interested in drama and give us the opportunity to see if this is something we want to pursue in the future,” Rupp said. “It gives us the opportunity to display what we’ve learned and show people what we do in drama class.”

While their goal is to provide people with a night of fun, Elicker and her students are also hoping to raise some funds for the school’s drama club. The club is made up of about 30 different members who will participate in various shows and theatre activities in the school. Students have already performed one play this year, written by Elicker’s husband, but are hoping this event will help fund future performances.

All the proceeds they collect will go toward funding the spring musical as well as other performances.

This spring, the drama department plans to perform “Little Shop of Horrors.” In order to do so, the school has to buy the rights to the play, which can cost thousands of dollars, as well as find costumes and create sets. As a new school, Hickory Ridge doesn’t have the same amount of money saved in its department as other schools. Fundraisers like the Family Movie Night are necessary to start building a pool the school can draw from.

Students are hoping that visitors will feel generous. The auditorium seats 750, even if each person donated one dollar they’d be able to raise a substantial amount Elicker said.

“I hope it works out,” Elicker said. “That’s what we’re really counting on right now. I thought it’d be a nice idea. A lot nicer than selling candles door to door.”

• Contact Christie Barlow at [email protected] or 704-789-9140.

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