Pleasant Ridge Elementary school staff took it to the max and won the totally awesome Schools of Rock competition at Saline High School Friday night.
Staff from Saline High School, Saline Middle School, and Heritage, Pleasant Ridge, Harvest and Woodland Meadows elementary schools competed in the increasingly sophisticated lip-sync and dance competition.
Proceeds from the sold-out show in the 1,100-seat Ellen E. Ewing Performing Arts Center will benefit the Foundation for Saline Area Schools. The foundation supports the school district with mini-grants for smaller educational initiatives and larger strategic grants in support of next generation learning throughout the district.
Judges for the contest were Sunshine Lambert, of Saline Recreation, Doug Bacon, Saline grad and former facilities manager for the district, and Ellen Ewing, former superintendent of the district.
The theme for the show was “Back to the 80s,” so there was a lot of dancing to the music of Michael Jackson.
Pleasant Ridge was built in the late 80s before opening in 1990 to replace Jensen Elementary. The Pleasant Ridge number began with construction workers digging up an old “Jensen Elementary” sign while working on a bond project at the school. They also freed up an assortment of ghosts. Their routine feature Bonnie Tyler’s I Need a Hero, Ray Parker Jr.’s Ghostbusters, Michael Jackson’s Bad, Twisted Sister’s We’re Not Gonna Take It, Run-DMC’s Walk This Way and C&C Music Factory’s Everybody Dance Now.
Principal Kevin Musson turned in a surprisingly nimble imitation of Michael Jackson. Musson had participated in past Schools of Rock events as an administrator. But it was the first time he experienced the event, and all of the prerequisite practice and planning, as a principal of a competing school.
“We enjoyed getting together after school and practicing. They worked diligently on the costumes and their choreography. It was great for morale and the building,” Musson said as his staff danced around the stage with their trophy and Sting, the school’s mascot.
Music teacher Emily Ouellet organized music and lighting. Olivia Arnett was responsible for choreography and teaching the staff the routines. Melissa Waltz and Nicole Phelps helped with costumes and choreography.
Schools of rock also featured performances by Magic Joe and Varsity Blues, which previewed its Dec. 16-17 holiday show at Saline Middle School.
The Foundation for Saline Area Schools’ next major event is Snow Blast, held Feb. 4 at Travis Point Country Club. Purchase tickets at www.supportfsas.org.
Below are videos and pictures from Schools of Rock. Click a picture for the gallery.