You could feel the tension in the air as children from the Washington Community School Summer Camp scrambled early on Aug. 1 to get ready for the show.
Each year for the last five years, the camp has ended with a musical extravaganza, something special put on by the students to show off their talents and to entertain parents and friends.
“This is something the kids, with the help of our counselors, helped create themselves,” said Eric N. Ryan, the camp’s program director.
In the moments before the production, students moved through the halls of Washington School tying up last minute details, the echo of their footsteps and their excited voices filling the school with a sense of purpose.
Some carried props that would be used in the musical numbers, such as the collection of red electric guitars that would be featured prominently in the production of “Rock Star.”
Parents took their seats slowly, settling and looking over the program that listed the names of the cast and the various performances, such as songs like “Oh, Mister Sun” and “Surfin’ U.S.A.”
Cheerleading and dance numbers were also featured in the show, including camp cheers and productions called “Nobody’s Perfect,” “Cha-Cha Slide” and “Cotton Eye Joe.”
Along with parents, friends and siblings of the camp-goers, a handful of dignitaries, such as Schools Superintendent Dr. Patricia McGeehan, Board of Education member James Flynn, and even Councilman Gary La Pelusa, were in attendance.
Flynn and La Pelusa had come less in official capacities and more as supportive parents.
“I don’t have a child in the production, but one of my children is at the camp,” Flynn said, just as one of his children showed up to hand out flyers.
La Pelusa’s daughter, Jennifer, was a cast member in the musical theater portion of the event.
“This is my busy season with work, but I have to come out and support what my kid does,” La Pelusa said.
Along with Jennifer La Pelusa, campers that took part in the performances include Katelyn Kimball, Nicole Passariello, Deja Baret, Gina Passariello, Diana Rickard, Keary Riva, Bainc Griffin, Abigail Kowal, Kelsey Rodrigo, Samantha Lobo, Katie Steinbrunn, Taylor Reynolds, Alexa Reynolds, Deanna Reynolds, Serena Perez, Kelsey Rodrigo, Gabrielle Bacani, Natasha Najmi, James Ryan, Vina Varela and Mina Kousa.