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"Theater and creative writing are all excellent ways to learn discipline, team building and social skills. These activities also allow children to develop skill in communicating with those around them. Kids will learn how to request and receive help, and also how to give it when necessary. They will learn how to evaluate a situation and take the necessary action." These are children "who have the life skills necessary to build a strong and healthy social circle."

"School-A Foundation." Colorado Lifestyles, August 2007.

In Mr. Carter's Words . . .

Why are HCS Plays such an important part of the Hyland experience?

"In a lot of things, people are afraid to take a risk, that's why it seems most movies are all the same. People make a lot of money by following the formula for movies and plays. If you really want to make a difference, be authentic. People are very forgiving if they're having fun and they're real. They don't care if you're out of tune. People want to be a part of that; they miss the creativity that was a part of them at one time."

"You forget you are working with kids. They take the ball, and it's like working with professionals. They don't know they are supposed to be this good. We are not doing a high school play: we set the bar higher. They work hard. This experience develops confidence in working with others, sharing responsibilities, not getting mad at each other under backstage pressure, and of course, confidence in speaking. Behind the scenes, you see seniors being patient with the young seventh graders. Since students have input on their character, the ones who are quiet can hide behind the personality that we give them, and it's not so far away from their comfort zone that they cannot do a remarkable job."

Why are HCS play productions unique among high school plays?

Every Hyland junior high and high school student participates in HCS productions, in plot development, in backstage support, and on-stage presentation. Everyone wears multiple hats to achieve a finished, polished production. We respect the students enough to have a conversation, a dialogue open to creativity as the play is developed. The sophisticated, original plot lines are created from students' observations of actual conversations, elements from their academic studies, with a touch of current events and plot twists. Students learn to trust the edginess they have, and not be like everybody else, but identify their strengths contributing to the creative process of developing an HCS production. There's never been this combination of people and work from that combination, so creativity can allow them to take risks.

It is no wonder Mr. Carter's production company is called