Ms. Kissam’s play production class produces two shows a year and serves as a space for anyone who enjoys acting, singing, or dancing. This fall semester, her class performed The Laramie Project, that consisted of interviews that revolved around the gay University of Wyoming student, Matthew Shepard.
Last spring, they performed Once Upon a Mattres, a musical comedy based on The Princess and the Pea.
The LaramIe Project
Once upon a mattress
Ms. Kissam’s stage design class is responsible for the behind-the-scenes work for play production’s shows, and any other performances that require the crew’s assistance. Each student is trained in either costume design, lighting, sound, the construction of props and sets, or hair and makeup. In doing this, they are receiving hands-on experience that allows students to be able to work in a professional setting when they graduate.
Their costume department has access to Occidental College’s vast costume selection, and because of Oxy’s generosity, they are able to borrow a number of clothes for every new show.
Position/title: Theater/Film teacher
Courses/grade level: 7-8 theater laboratory, 9-11 theater ensemble, 9-11 filmmaking, 9-12 stage design, 9-12 play production
Ms. Kissam values the diversity of ERHS and believes it encaptures what a world might look like if everyone embraced each other’s culture. She teaches with kindness and a sense of humor. She also writes and acts outside of school with her friends.
Ms. Kissam holds a CTE (Career Technical Education), that can only be obtained with professional experience outside of LAUSD. By having this credential, she is able to apply for a Perkins Grant, only made available to CTE teachers. During Ms. Kissam’s first year, she was awarded a $45,000 Perkins Grant to upgrade the auditorium, and a $5,000 grant is in the works for this year.