Lights, Camera, Action!

by Mia Ramdayal, Staff Writer

In October 2011, Glen Rock welcomed Juliet McKinley, a graduate from Fordham University at Lincoln Center, who has passion for showing others the beauty of acting and participating in the world of theatre arts.

Her interest for theatre arts blossomed in high school when she got involved in her theatre club at school and began performing in shows and directing productions during her senior year of high school.

After high school, she continued to pursue her love for theatre while attending Fordham University at Lincoln Center and majoring in Theatre Directing.

“I’ve always loved the spirit and world of theatre,” McKinley said.

While pursuing theatre in college, she also began teaching at Northwestern University’s National High School Institute.

“I was influenced by my work at Northwestern University’s National High School Institute, where I spent time teaching and directing high school students,” McKinley said.

Although she wanted to pursue directing, she enjoyed learning about English and literature and had almost majored in it in college.

McKinley spent the next four years in the city directing a variety of shows and working at a design firm before going back to get her masters in teaching English.

“What I realized that I loved most about directing- working with people to encourage them to do their best- was a big aspect of teaching,” she said.

In 2012, her second year teaching at Glen Rock High School, McKinley became the adviser for the theatre company and Theatre Arts, in addition to teaching English classes.

Harrison Gale, a junior and longtime member of the theatre company, has known McKinley for the last four years and has worked with her on many projects.

“Her first priority is the students above all,” Gale said.

Gale says that McKinley has taught her to believe in herself as a performer and trust others around her when performing.

McKinley very supportive towards her students and encourages them to play roles in many different ways. With her help, the theatre company has been able to put on many productions, particularly Get Smart and Great Expectations.

“I am very project-oriented and I love the process of picking a show, making decisions about casting, meeting with designers and creating something with a group of fun, enthusiastic people,” McKinley said.