Selected Students to Travel to New York City for Play “Cover”

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Selected Students to Travel to New York City for Play “Cover”

Artwork provided by Joy Powell

Artwork provided by Joy Powell

Artwork provided by Joy Powell

Artwork provided by Joy Powell

Elyse Luecke, Staff Writer

Last year, Joy Powell, the director of the play “Cover”, came to GCAA theater teacher, Brandon Riley, in search of young girls to audition for the play. Auditions and callbacks were held, and five students from GCAA had the once in a lifetime opportunity to perform the play for local audiences. Now, those students will perform the play in New York City during Spring Break.

The play “Cover” is about illegal sex trafficking in St. Louis, as St. Louis is in the top 20 for this issue. The play portrays the stories of girls who were sold into sex slavery or experienced sexual harassment but found help at The Covering House in St. Louis. The Covering House helps provide restoration for girls who have experienced sex trafficking. Some of the scenes give glimpses of different girls at the covering house, discussing their different encounters or experiences, but it also incorporates the idea of the road to recovery for the girls affected.
Students have already performed six shows both in the Black Box on the sixth floor of GCAA and at Missouri Baptist University. Two of the shows served as a fundraiser for the non-profit organization that the play highlights.

“It was an honor to be in this play because we got to work with college students, the director Joy, and the biggest thing is to tell the stories of girls who have been through these stories we are portraying,” said Rachel Yarbrough, 11th grade.

Not only is there an important message in “Cover,” but it also benefits GCAA students by gaining publicity for the school and theater department.

“Our students from GCAA represented this school in an excellent fashion, not only with the performance, but understanding the material. This is helping GCAA establish connections with the colleges and universities in the area,” said Riley. “For people that saw this play, people ask what school these girls go to. Word of mouth travels fast.”

Yarbrough agreed that the play is beneficial to the community and GCAA but also highlighted the opportunities for students.

“It’s a good experience because it’s a chance for us to do something good for our community and to spread awareness for all communities,” she said. “It’s a good chance for us as high school students to see what it’s like in college with our art.”

The students will be performing the play at Metro Baptist in Harlem, New York on March 13th. Myasia Kisart, Maria Pena, Rachel Yarbrough and Tazera Edwards will be playing girls who benefited from The Covering House services in St. Louis.

“I encourage everyone to support our students, because it means a lot to them,” Riley added.

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