With their hands in the circle, everyone chanted, “Always.” After completing their warm-ups and breathing exercises, the cast was ready to take the stage. Senior Dru Denny has been a part of these pre-show traditions since she was in seventh grade.
“I do a few vocal warm-ups, stretch, and end with a quick prayer,” Denny said. “These things make me feel more relaxed before I go on stage.”
Denny has been doing some sort of acting for most of her life. From acting in church shows at the age of 6 with her friends to being awarded the second best actor in the state, drama has impacted her life a vast amount.
“I absolutely see acting in my future,” Denny said. “It’s all I have ever dreamed of doing. It’s what makes me the happiest.”
Even though Denny makes acting look easy, it is an extremely difficult task. She handles this responsibility by being very confident in herself and her abilities. Where other actors would fold under pressure, Denny succeeds and shows off her true talent.
“Dru is very talented and I have no doubt she will be successful in the future,” senior drama student Deisy Bustamante said.
Denny’s teachers have also commented on how dependable she is.
“Dru is one of the most considerate and respectful, as well as brilliantly and naturally talented young women I have ever known,” Drama teacher Jana Ellis said.
Since eighth grade, Denny’s has participated in a total of ten plays, with “The Yellow Boat,” this year’s one act, being her favorite. This true story is about a boy named Benjamin, who has congenital hemophilia, an inherited bleeding disorder, and contracted aids at the age of eight. He expresses himself through drawings and paintings. Ben always wanted to be the yellow boat that sailed to the sun.
“My favorite play would have to be the one we won at state with, ‘The Yellow Boat,'” Denny said. “It’s the show that truly pushed me as an actor and made me dig deep into my emotions to connect with the role.”
Although she may look confident before going on stage, she is always a little nervous, but during the performance, she is filled with adrenaline. Her favorite part of acting is making people feel something. According to Denny, the hardest part of acting is not acting itself.
“As an actor, you have to play the role as if it is real life,” Denny said. “In a show, you don’t just ‘play’ the character, you are the character, you become someone new.”
Playing the roles comes natural to Denny.
“Dru really commits to any role she is given, and she is always very open to learning new techniques that will help her learn from experiences she hasn’t gone through, to put herself in her character’s shoes,” Deisy said.
Acting hasn’t just influenced her future career, but has also led to many of her closest friendships. These friendships have strengthened her as an actor and made her a better person.
“We all grew together as actors, and this is what brought us closer,” Denny said. “I couldn’t ask for better friends.”
Drama students all admire Denny’s natural talent.
“Dru is one of the funniest, talented, and genuine person I have ever known,” Macy Lapham said. “I am so glad to have the pleasure of being her friend since middle school.”
Denny couldn’t have achieved all this without her supportive mentor, Mrs. Ellis. She has provided strength, humility, courage, and many other things that Dru can take with her when she leaves.