University High School’s One-Act play is making history

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WACO, Texas – Theatre students at University High School are doing something that has never been done in school history – they made it to the 5A UIL Competition.

University High School Director of Theatre Glenn Price says the students have worked so hard.

“We have been wanting to do this play for over ten years,” Price said. “So we had the right kids, at the right time, with the right people, and it just feels good.”

Even having to adjust safety protocols and schedules due to COVID, they managed to be successful – wanting to represent their school district well.

“We want the play to have those moments where they go, ‘Ahhh, I know what this feels like!’ or ‘I’ve seen this before!,'” Price said. “If it speaks to them, they are able to live it. Not just act it.”

Price says the One-Act plays have a variety of topics such as adolescent discovery, homelessness, death – and even depression.

Nancy Quezada, who has the leading female role, says being in theatre is more than just a program – it has been her lifeline.

“I am very grateful for both our directors,” Quezada said. “We wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for both of them. They work so hard, and we all love them.”

As the cast prepares to leave on Thursday, Quezada has some mixed emotions going into the state competition.

“I am very excited, a little bit nervous. But I think the excitement will overpower the slight nervousness that I have,” Quezada said.

University High will present it’s One-Act play “Trestle at Pope Lick Creek,” which cannot exceed 40 minutes, in front of a panel of judges.

They will compete in a series of performances against other schools within the 5A conference. Those dates are April 30- May 1.

Price is happy to not only represent the school, but the City of Waco.

“The play can change these students’ lives,” Price said. “We’ve had kids offered scholarships already, and get accepted into colleges just from judges watching them.”

The competition will take place at 5:30 p.m. at Round Rock McNeil High School in Austin, and the winner will be announced on Saturday evening.

With the students making history, Price hopes to give them something they will always remember.

“If I can make one kid go, [You know what I can do anything!] then I’ve won,” Price said. To teach theatre is a calling, but to teach anything is a blessing.”

To purchase tickets, you can visit the UIL website.

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