158 Nixa students perform their first musical in the new Aetos Performing Arts Center

Published: Mar. 23, 2023 at 4:45 AM CDT
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NIXA, Mo. (KY3) - Nixa Public Schools’ students will perform their first production in their new performing arts center this weekend.

In 2019, voters approved a bond issue to build the building, allowing students to thrive in the arts. The word Aetos means eagle in Greek, representing the school mascot. The facility seats more than 1,100 people for band, choir, and theater performances. The district hosted a grand opening last month, but now the public can enjoy the first musical performance.

“We’re just absolutely thrilled this space,” said Dr. Allison Fleetwood, Nixa theater Teacher. “It is state of the art, and our students can train in this facility. I never imagined in my teaching career that I would get to have this experience in this facility because not only do we have an amazing performance hall with a beautiful lobby and great facilities, but we have a drama lab, which is a small black box theater. We have lots of kids going out to perform, but we also have technicians, and we’re going to be able to train them on either side. So this facility is just given us like a step up of training for our students.”

Theater productions are a lot of work, throw in singing and dancing, and it’s even more difficult. Then add in a cast of more than 150 2nd-12th graders, and you have a challenge most would shy away from. Dr. Allison Fleetwood took on that challenge, and this weekend students will present the first musical performed in the Aetos Center.

Based on the popular Nickelodeon cartoon, Spongebob The Musical takes all your favorite characters from the screen to the stage. The cast and crew have been working for weeks to break into the new facility and bring the magic of bikini bottom to life. Dr. Fleetwood says that performing this would not be possible without the help of other teachers.

“I have an amazing team,” said Dr. Fleetwood. “It is not me. It is the students. It is my choreographers, my assistant director, my tech director, and my stage manager. This is not one person putting this together. It is a massive group of people.”

Nixa Theatre Presents: The SpongeBob MusicalMarch 23, 24, & 25, at 7 p.m., March 25, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $15. Tickets cost $12 for students and seniors.

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