The cast of Broadway's Come From Away recently traveled to P.S. 52 in Sheepshead Bay as part of its I Am An Islander project. The project connects classrooms in New York City with classrooms in Newfoundland through the support of the NYC Department of Education, the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District, the City College of New York's (CCNY) graduate program in educational theatre, and a Broadway League Education Grant.
With the support of CCNY teaching artist Emily Annellis, P.S. 52 students in Ms. Naomi Avadanei's theatre club interviewed Marsha Pittman's 5th grade classroom at Gander Elementary in Gander, Newfoundland, about their community. Using those interviews, the P.S. 52 students created a theater presentation about the culture and community of Gander, focusing on a recent harsh snow storm, while the Gander students created a graffiti project focusing on the 2017 U.S. Presidential election. The Come From Away cast members were on hand to watch and give guidance to the budding thespians and writers.
Additional participating New York City classrooms and teachers included Brigid Warnke's 9th and 10th grade classes at Claremont International High School; Christina Massie's 12th grade class at Brooklyn Technical High School; Thais Flaitt Giannoccaro's high school class at High School for Environmental Studies; Jessica Mintzes' 8th grade class at Irwin Altman Middle School 172; and Andrea Joseph's 6th, 7th and 8th grade classes at PS/MS 146Q.
Additional participating Newfoundland classrooms and teachers included Daynen Sheehy's 7th grade class at Lakewood Academy; Jennifer Stanley's 10th, 11th, 12th grade classes at Gander Collegiate; Jo Anne Broders' 8th grade class at Smallwood Academy; Angela O'Brien's 11th and 12th grade class at Lewisporte Collegiate; and Jennifer Parsons' 9th grade class at St. Paul's Intermediate.
Additional teaching artists included Patrick McGee and Sobha Kavanakudiyil with the support of Jennifer Katona from City College of New York's graduate program in educational theatre