News & updates

News & updates

show posterEncore Theater Company Presents: Titanic - The Musica

Randolph Union’s Encore Theater Company is about to unveil a spring production unlike any other in their more than sixty year history - as "Titanic: The Musical" emerges from post-production on April 12, 2021.

Created by more than two dozen actors drawn from current students, alumni, and members of the community, this spring’s production explores immigration, aspiration, technology, and hubris through the lens of actual passengers and crew who were aboard the ill-fated maiden voyage of the “unsinkable” Titanic.  

The performance is a collaboration of RU's longtime artistic and music directors, BC Rainville and Jennifer Moore - with support from Mat Eisenstein, Titanic's Original Broadway pianist. Very special thanks also go to our audio-engineer, Vincent Freeman of Randolph's Underground Studio; and to the Shelburne Museum, which generously made the decks and interiors of their 1906 steamship Ticonderoga available for publicity photos.

Randolph Union refused to shutter its theater program during the pandemic, instead adapting to a much changed reality with a 1930's radio show in October and by pioneering a new type of performance with their audio-only production of "Titanic: The Musical" coming this April 12. 

Concord Theatricals, which is rooted in the 19th century, has consistently advocated and enabled youth theater.  Please “come aboard” and enjoy this year’s special and outstanding musical.

For access to the audio, visit the Box Office here: Titanic Box Office

View the Show Program here: Titanic Program

RU Finds New Ways to Engage Students

How does a school offer clubs and activities during a pandemic? RU has an answer - adapt.

At Randolph Union High School and Middle School the clubs have gone virtual. The cooking club has now become more of a guided meal-kit club, with recipes and ingredients picked by the students and advisors. And other clubs have "adapted" as well.

Read the story here in the Valley News.

Gear Up Alum Kelsey Stratton Gives Back to Her HometownKelsey Stratton

Courtesy of VT Digger and the VT Student Assistance Corporation - December 2020

Speaking with special education teacher and GEAR UP alum Kelsey Stratton is nothing short of inspiring. A native of Randolph Union High School, Kelsey credits both her ability to give back to her students and her interest in education to the support VSAC gave to her as a young student.

Read the whole story here: RU Alum Gives Back to Her Hometown

RUHS Bass Fishing Returns to the Podium
RU Fishing Team
The RUHS Bass Fishing Team returned to the podium this pastSaturday, October 3d, taking home the Vermont runner-up award at the VPA Bass Fishing State Championships on Lake Champlain.

In the three years the VPA has held this championship, the RU team has gotten pretty comfortable on the winner's podium, as they have finished in 1st or 2nd place in all three competitions.

Fall 2018: State Runner-up
Fall 2019: State Champion
Fall 2020: State Runner-up 

This year’s derby featured the largest field yet with 18 schools competing. RU’s team reeled in 6 fish totaling a weight of 18.74 lbs, beating out 3rd place Essex whose 6 fish totaled 18.67 lbs, but falling short of White River Valley's total of 22.93 lbs. 

This year’s anglers were Chase Martin and Brendan Vinton, with Anthony Vinton serving as boat captain during the competition. Also on the team were Blake Baker, Joey Ferris, and Landon Campbell. 

RUHS Jazz Ensemble Performs in Randolph Café
By Connor Engelsman (Photo courtesy of Tim Calabro)
jazz band performs at cafe
The RUHS Jazz Lab performed their first gig at the Green Light Café in downtown Randolph [recently]. 

At the busy café, one could hear mugs clinking against spoons, light-hearted chatter, and rhythmic jazz coming from the upstairs lounge. One could then wander to the sitting area in which the students were playing and [literally] feel the hard work they'd put into preparing for the gig.

The musicians smiled, thanked the slowly swelling crowd, and played their instruments to the delight of onlookers. The ensemble of six created their own set list for the gig, which was full of classics like “Take Five” by Dave Brubeck and “My Favorite Things” by John Coltrane, and were at the forefront of organizing and planning for the event.

“In terms of a classical band program, the teacher chooses the music, the teacher decides who’s soloing, the teacher gives the interpretation of the piece, and the teacher conducts the piece. The students more often than not just play the notes and the music that’s on the page and then make little decisions within that,” said the band’s director, RUHS music teacher Ray Cole. “For the jazz lab, my goal was for them to make all the choices.” 

“The performance itself allows the students to be self-sufficient, to really take their own education into their own hands,” he added. 

After the show, Cole noted that the Jazz Lab, in its first year of existence, makes the RUHS band program more accessible, as jazz music is sometimes more appealing to students than classical music. Through the program, a wider field of students is becoming engaged in performing music. As jazz music can also be harder to play, it provides students the opportunity to be challenged. Jazz Lab will also perform at a variety show at the Chandler Music Hall in Randolph on December 7, and in all upcoming RUHS band concerts.

RUHS Wins Award for Originality At Rutland Halloween Parade
picture of halloween float
Courtesy of The Herald, October 31, 2019
By Connor Engelsman

Last Saturday evening, Randolph Union High and Middle School band and art students participated in the 60th annual Rutland Halloween parade and won the award for most original theme at the event.

The band played Black Magic Woman by Santana, Zombie by The Cranberries, and Back in Black by AC/DC from within and behind the art students’ “Rock Band of the Dead”-themed float, while the float’s creators joined them at either side of their construction, high-fiving onlookers and overall showing a lot of enthusiasm.

RU saxophonist Kyrsten Paroline, who has marched in the parade four times, said that the band’s largest challenge this year was matching the enthusiasm demanded of the pieces they were performing.
Participating in the parade was a way to expose students to new experiences and the community around them.

“It gives [students] an opportunity to get out and see the community a little bit more and do something that we don’t usually do in the classroom,” said band teacher Ray Cole.

Craig Wiltse, the RU art teacher, added that problem-solving and validation of creativity were the largest benefits of students’ participation in the parade.

“They have to think about so many pieces,” he noted. The float, which the art students designed and built, has to be able to move down the road at 50 miles per hour and it has to look good!

“In the end, they see what was [once] in their mind rolling down the road with people standing on it and interacting with it and enjoying it. So, it goes from just a dream in their head to an actual, physical thing,” Wiltse continued. “[They] realize that they can make their ideas come into the physical world.”