Cherry Hill East’s Thespian Society prepares for the 2018 Coffeehouse
January 19, 2018
Cherry Hill East’s Thespian Society reaches out to the community every year with Coffeehouse, a night filled with baked goods, drinks, and a lineup of impressive performances by various East students with unique talents. Contributions from each year’s show go toward a charitable cause voted on by the students of the Thespian Society. In addition to showcasing the diverse talents of the student body at East, Coffeehouse aims to raise money for the decided charitable foundation.
This year’s cause, Lupus research, is one that is very important to many in the East community, including Thespian Society President Harrison Smith. Smith, whose mother was diagnosed with this serious autoimmune disease several years ago, is very passionate about spreading awareness about Lupus and the hardships faced by those who suffer from it. Lupus can flare up suddenly, changing someone’s life without warning, and the available treatments pose many dangers and setbacks. Smith himself, along with any of his siblings, is susceptible to being diagnosed with Lupus in the future. Regardless, he said, “even if it doesn’t pass down to me, my mother still suffers from it and it’s important that we spread awareness”. This disease impacts many families similar to Smith’s, and Coffeehouse plays a very important role in ensuring that people in the East community are aware of it, educated about it, and maintain an initiative to help find a cure.
As some East students may have already seen this past week, shirts were sold leading up to Saturday night’s event in order to begin raising money for the Lupus Foundation. These shirts display the theme of the night: a purple butterfly. This butterfly is the symbol of Lupus; a common symptom/giveaway of the disease is a red rash on the sufferers’ cheeks and noses similar to the shape of a butterfly, and purple is the disease’s ribbon color. This year’s stage is set to fit this theme as well.
In addition to the bake sale, coffee, and the warm feeling of community togetherness which everyone can take away from Coffeehouse, the performances occurring throughout the night continue to be a main attraction of the event every year. Unlike other music and theatre performances held every year at East, Coffeehouse includes performances from any type of students at East who audition, regardless of whether they are involved in any of the Arts programs at school. “Every year”, Smith explains, “it’s a surprise, even if it’s the same people [performing as years prior].” Coffeehouse allows students who are already part of either of these departments or who have already performed to further showcase their skills/new skills, while also displaying hidden talents of the broader student body.
By coming out to Coffeehouse, which runs from 7-10 on Saturday night, you can make a huge impact and enjoy yourself. Whether you stay for the entire time or just stop in to catch a few performances, you can view presentations about Lupus, or enjoy the bake sale and coffee, all while contributing to the East community and a greater cause and learning more about the varying talents at East–many of which may surprise you.