By Megan Johnson
Sophomore theater student Joel Jackson takes a deep breath, running over his lines in his head a thousand times over to ensure he does not make a mistake. It’s only minutes away before he steps upon the stage to perform for hundreds of people. For most teenagers, this situation would be extremely stressful. However, for Jackson it is just another day.
Jackson has been involved in theater for approximately 12 years. He got started through watching his sister perform ballet.
“I was interested whilst watching her perform. So, I started taking the acting classes that they offered. From then on I just started working at different places and fell in love with it.”
Jackson shared that since that time, he has had the opportunity to be a part of many different shows all over the country. This includes Indiana, Kentucky, New York, Georgia and Florida.
Out of the many Jackson has participated in, he shared the most memorable.
“My top three would have to be ‘Music Man’ at the Oldham County Arts Center, ‘Aladdin’ in Atlanta, Georgia and ‘Wizard of Oz’ at Derby Dinner,” said Jackson.
Not only has acting affected Jackson’s memories, but it has inflicted upon his personality as well.
“It’s made me really confident. I’m really outgoing as well and I’m not afraid to talk to people,” said Jackson.
Jackson’s personality shines through to those around him, at least it does to one of his closest friends junior Bonnie Hopkins.
“The first time I met Joel was one day during lunch. He came up to me and said ‘Let’s go, Bonnie.’ Then we walked around the school together just talking. We’ve been best friends ever since,” said Hopkins.
Hopkins shared that she had seen only a few of Jackson’s performances, but every one she had seen was fantastic.
“He’s a phenomenal actor. He just connects so well with the audience,” said Hopkins.
Sophomore Ashley Denny shared that she believes Jackson’s acting skills are that of a professional.
“I definitely see him going places with such talent.”
Since theater has become such a major part of Jackson’s life, he plans on pursuing a career with it.
“Theater is great if it’s your passion, which for me it is. My main goal is to be on Broadway someday. But just in general, I want to be paid to do what I love.”
Jackson ended with a strong statement to sum up his love of theater,
“I cherish it.”
Students can observe Jackson in his latest performance in “Les Miserables.” The showing times are Nov. 1,2, 8 and 9th at 7:30, and Nov. 3 and 10 at 2:30.