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Wauconda school presenting 'Miracle Worker'
By Hayley Kaplan | Daily Herald Staff

Seventh-grader Mariah Lee, left, of Libertyville as Hellen Keller, and eighth-grader Nikala Purcell of Wauconda as her mother in the Water's Edge Waldorf School's production of "The Miracle Worker" at Matthews Middle School.


Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

Students go through a rehearsal for the Water's Edge Waldorf School's production of "The Miracle Worker" at Matthews School in Wauconda Tuesday evening.


Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

Fifth-grader Aramis Dooley of Bull Valley, left, seventh-grader Mariah Lee of Libertyville and sixth-grader Shane Purcell of Wauconda go through a rehearsal for the Water's Edge Waldorf School's production of "The Miracle Worker."


Steve Lundy | Staff Photographer

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Published: 5/29/2009 12:00 AM

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Water's Edge Waldorf School's performance of the play "The Miracle Worker" came to a screeching halt just a few months ago.

The fact that Water's Edge does not have a performance space once again became a problem the school has had to grapple with since its opening for preschool to eighth-grade students in 2005. However, with help from Matthews Middle School in Island Lake, the show is going on.

Water's Edge Waldorf is a private school in Wauconda where the arts are integrated as part of the school's curriculum. In the past, they have resorted mainly to renting space from churches for their performances. However, Matthews offered its stage and the opportunity to practice after school to the students of Water's Edge, who remain most grateful.

"Although we're a private school and you could think of us as being in competition, they (Matthews) wanted to see the space used and it was very generous," said Susan Love, an administrator and parent at Water's Edge Waldorf. Water's Edge is paying $30 an hour to rent the area for practices. The use of the school for the performance itself, though, is free.

Vice Principal Tony Harter at Matthews Middle School said that the success of Matthews' performance of "The Wizard of Oz" last month propelled him to want to share the love of the arts.

Ultimately, though, the children were the driving force of this effort.

"Why not cooperate and work together and share whatever we can with each other? It's a great attitude to have. We want the same thing, which is a great education for our children and all the advantages we can possibly give them," Love said.

Harter agreed.

"They're Wauconda students even if they aren't in our district," he said.

Although the schools have never been unfriendly to one another, this gives each of them a chance to communicate with each other through helping the students of Wauconda and supporting the arts.

"I hope it does build a relationship for us to communicate and do things together and to recognize each other and help each other out," Harter said.

Matthews students who work on tech may even get the chance to help out during the performance, but as of now that has yet to be decided.

"The Miracle Worker" will be performed at Matthews Middle School, 3500 Darrell Road in Wauconda, at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 30. The play is free, and seats can be reserved by calling (847) 526-1372.