Ryan Smith Festival showcases student talents

  • Tue May 13th, 2008 7:18am
  • Life

The Friday Harbor High School drama program presents the sixth annual Ryan Smith Performing Arts Festival Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 7-10 p.m., at Friday Harbor High School.

The event is an evening of theatrical, vocal and instrumental arts performed by 23 island high school students.

Students will present a variety of one-act plays, songs and musical selections in the intimate setting of the recently named Ryan Smith Theater at Friday Harbor High School.

For drama teacher Fred Yockers, the festival — when it happens — is always a treat.

“It doesn’t happen every year,” Yockers said. “The kids, they have to care about their art enough to make this happen. They produce it, not me.”

A portion of proceeds raised by the festival go to the Ryan Smith Performing Arts Fund. The fund supports the Ryan Smith Performing Arts Award, given to graduating seniors who have demonstrated an interest in a career in dramatic arts.

“The Smiths go out of their way every year,” Yockers said. “They put the word out among their family and friends. I just received a check for $1,000 from them. Their family and friends donate it in the name of Ryan, which is great.”

A dollar of every ticket admission goes toward the award. Yockers directs other money to the fund as well.

“Avery Adams put together a group and performed one night in October and he raised $388 and he put that money toward the program,” Yockers said.

The festival is named in memory of former Friday Harbor High School student Ryan Smith, the son of Mary and “Smithy” Smith of Friday Harbor. Ryan was a talented saxophonist and actor.

Admission is $8. Seating is limited. Only 65-70 seats per performance are available.

Tickets are available from student performers and by calling Yockers at 378-5215, ext. 7128.

Unsold seats will be available at the door each night.