'Bolts light up the stage at Cranston East
On Thursday, Feb. 7, the talented students of Cranston East took over the stage for the 15th annual Bolts on Broadway Talent Night.
When asked about how the audition process went, Mark Colozzi, music instructor at Cranston East, was very optimistic.
"We are always pleasantly surprised at some of the talent that comes out of the woodwork. We will have close to 20 acts that include singers, dancers, actors, rappers, the JROTC Drill Team and the East Jazz Ensemble," he said.
The show is collaborated on by three organizations within Cranston East; the Drama department, chaired by Joseph Wallace; the FCCLA (Family, Career and Community Leaders of America) club, of which Marie Birch is the faculty advisor; and the music department with Colozzi.
"As far as FCCLA is concerned, our money goes to charity. We have a national outreach project - Share our Strength. It is a non-profit that wants to reduce childhood hunger in the U.S. by 2015," Birch explained. "FCCLA, every two years, partners with a charity that our entire student membership [220,000] across the county fundraises and supports. There is a greater power in numbers. In the past two years, the two Cranston chapters, including Cranston High School West, have raised $2,500 for the cause. Two other local projects that the funds will support are a school-wide Random Acts of Kindness campaign and Animals Depend on People Too (ADOPT) to help support sick and abandoned animals."
The over 400-member audience was made up of cheering friends, proud family members and faculty.
Co-hosted by students Ben Brown and Tyler Phillips, the show moved along quickly and each act received a warm response. Several performers were given standing ovations when their sets were done.
The first act was opened by an a capella performance of the national anthem by Emily Bitton, who was accompanied by the JROTC Color Guard, and was followed by a presentation of the JROTC drill team.
Mary Prum played the ukulele while she sang Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours," and she was followed by Briana Stewart who sang, "I Dreamed a Dream" from "Les Miserables."
An unexpected act called "Ballet Boyz" was actually four students doing hip-hop break dancing.
Taking a break from the music of the evening, six Introduction to Theater students acted in a funny skit called "Don't Play in Traffic," where they performed the same scene but acted differently in each performance, such as overly dramatic slow motion and very fast.
Marcos Figueroa played a Spanish flamenco on the guitar, and then Melissa Campos sang "Not Over You" by Gavin DeGraw, which drew lots of audience participation on the chorus.
Christian Correia sang the Eminem song "Can't Back Down," and the first act was closed out with Alexis Howard performing an interpretational dance.
Filling the intermission time, co-emcees Brown and Phillips entertained the audience with a competition of who could tell the worst joke. No winner was declared in this contest.
The stage was set for act two, which started with the Cranston East Jazz Ensemble performing two songs, "Feeling Good" by Michael Bublé, which had Sam Chakmakian singing solo, and the instrumental piece "You Make Me Smile" by the band Chicago.
Returning to singing acts, Justice Brown and Cynthia Munrayos performed a duet called "Ratchet Girl Anthem" by Emmanuel Hudson. Munrayos had performed earlier as a solo act singing "I'm OK" by Christina Aguilera, and Selena Canales sang the Ja Rule song "Down for You."
Bryan San performed a pop and lock dance to the song "All for Love," and Janice Cepeda sang "Thinking about You" by Frank Ocean.
The night was closed out with the East Winter Percussion.
"Bolts on Broadway was a great success and I am truly grateful that the FCCLA members and I were able to help make it an awesome show," said Senior Sandara Tan, president of FCCLA. "Lots of work was put towards campaigning, making posters and advertising for the event, but it was all worth it as many students came out to support their fellow peers. It was moving to see everyone cheer and support the great talent we have here at Cranston East."