provides a welcoming environment for youth, artists, and community members to experience self-discovery and growth through the art and process of theatre.Watch a video of our story
February 12, 2018
Alumna Hannah Feintuch was in the NHTP Youth Repertory Company from 2000-2010. What is she doing now?
The first question my principal asked me after observing my class in September was, “Did you do theatre growing up?” I was confused. She hadn’t observed me dramatically reading lines from Hamlet like I’d learned to do in my youth classes at NHTP, just delivering a typical lesson to my ESL middle school students. When I asked her how she knew, she told me that I command the room with my body and gestures, and that my presence draws students’ eyes even when I weave through the desks. The way I use my voice, too, she said, was clearly a learned technique-- I can get 35 middle schoolers at the edge of their seats using a whisper and can cause an explosion of energy with a set of directions. This was one of the first of many moments that made me realize the impact that my time at NHTP has had on me as a professional.
After graduating from The George Washington University and spending a year working in higher education admissions, I joined Teach for America. I was placed in a middle school in Chelsea, MA as an ESL teacher where I continue to teach all new immigrants-- students on a word or sentence level of English who have experienced incredible trauma and challenges to be in the United States. Today, I have my Masters in Education from BU and am in my third year at my placement school. I think of my time at NHTP often. My students will not be afforded an experience to learn and grow as an individual and artist like I had. So in my classroom, I lean into my persona of silly, dramatic Ms. Feintuch who sometimes greets students at the door in costume, challenge my students to write and perform skits (we’ve been known to throw things and stand on chairs and shout), and operate with the goal that my students deserve to experience the same sense of belonging to something bigger than themselves that I experienced in Youth Rep. NHTP taught me a love of the arts, to read and think critically, responsibility, and what it feels like to create something alongside others. NHTP prepared me to perform on my new stage for my 35 deserving audience members.
NHTP has recently been the fortunate recipient of four grants! We were awarded a two-year $9,100 Public Values Partnership Grant from the NH State Council on the Arts, with funding support from the National Endowment for the Arts. We also received a $5,000 grant from the NH Charitable Foundation to support the work of consultant Ann Hopkins, who is assisting NHTP in planning our capital campaign for the purchase of WEST.
The brand new Elephant-in-the-Room Series, a forum of playreading and community dialogues about topics that we are not always comfortable discussing, has been funded by a $6,000 grant from the NH Humanities and $5,000 from the Seacoast Women’s Giving Circle.
NHTP’s 2017-18 season opened with Crazy World by Cornelius Productions, a one-woman musical based on the life of Julie Andrews starring Susan Scannell Gilbert. A smash it, Crazy World was completely sold out for every performance!
And, a Wedding!
Our own Meghann Beauchamp, director of the Junior Repertory Company and lighting designer extraordinaire, was married in September to Jeremiah Messer. Congratulations to Meghann and Jeremiah from all of us at NHTP!
The Time Machine opens November 10-26, starring Chris Curtis as the Time Traveller. Don’t miss James Patrick Kelly’s lecture on H. G. Wells immediately following the Sunday, November 12 performance.
Thursday, November 16, 7 pm
The first Elephant-in-the-Room topic is Human Trafficking and Abuse, in collaboration with HAVEN. NHTP artists will read Body & Sold by Deborah Fortson. Discussion will be facilitated by Timothy Barretto with panelists Alecia Peters from the University of New England, Joi Smith of HAVEN, and Cheri Crider of Courage Speaks NH. Admission is free. Donations to HAVEN are welcome.
Saturday, November 18, 10-11:30 am.
The Portfolio Approach to College Applications with Michael Megliola. A new approach for students interested in engineering, computer science, performing arts, visual arts, creative writing, or other disciplines that produce original work. Open to parents and students.
Photo Credits: Hannah Feintuch, Courtesy Photo; Susan Scannell Gilbert in Crazy World, Photo by David Murray; Meghann Beauchamp and Jeremiah Messer, Courtesy Photo; Chris Curtis as The Time Traveller, Photo by Catherine Stewart; The Playwright’s Lab, Photo by Crystal Gould.