The Adventures of Mystical Morphew

The Blue and White would love to introduce Mr. Morphew, our amazing theater teacher at Apopka High School. We discussed the reasons why he has a passion for theater, and what made him decide to pursue teaching theater. Additionally, we dabbled in why students should try some of the programs the drama club has to offer.

[For me,] theatre started in a junior high school class. During my freshman year of high school, The Glass Menagerie was the Fall Play. A stage brace had broken off the back of a wall (flat) during the show and I had to stay onstage through the scene and hold it. It was a great experience, and I was having the time of my life! The next year, because I was also in chorus and played guitar, I was cast in my first lead role as Captain von Trapp in The Sound of Music. I had always thought about teaching. My mother, aunt, and grandmother were all teachers. I believe in what the theatre provides us as audience members, performers, and technicians. Sharing that passion with students makes my overall theatre experience more fulfilling as I help nurture young artists, watch them grow, and see them discovering for themselves.

My heart is always onstage, my mind is always backstage, and my soul is equally blessed throughout. Acting, though, is where my whole truth lies.

I have a lot of students that get into my classroom because it’s a credit they must have to graduate. There are many electives to satisfy that requirement within the visual and performing arts, but they aren’t theatre. Respectively speaking, all forms of art are met within the theatre. It acts, dances, sings, plays instruments, paints, builds, forms, designs, speaks, and “…to hold as it ‘twere the mirror up to nature…” Students should try theatre we have fun! As for communication skills, at the end of my first year, one of my students wrote me stating that he wasn’t really “feeling” the class in the beginning. Later he started having fun and by the end of the year he felt more confident as a communicator; willing to take proper risks going up against challenges, and knowing that he wouldn’t be in fear the next time he had to get up in front of any crowd to speak. That is more than fulfilling and gratifying for me. Any student interested in theatre at Apopka High does not have to take a class to be a part of our program, and there are numerous opportunities throughout the year.

I am very excited about our school year! We’ve got a lot going on. Twelve Angry Jurors is our Fall dramatic play. Hoka Ha! An improv comedy show happens afterward. Between our main stage and second stage, however, we will be working on a one-act play for the International Thespian Honor Society District Festival that takes place in November. At thespian districts, students also work on, and present, monologue/duet acting; sing songs from musicals; set/sound/costume/publicity design/costume construction; and stage management portfolios. In the Spring, we will be producing a comedic piece, titled Blithe Spirit. We’ll have our second semester Hoka Ha! improv Comedy Show, both of which are student-directed productions. We also have workshops throughout the year. Last year, we hosted UCF Theatre Graduate students, The Orlando Reparatory Theatre, and the Orlando Shakes. I’m also excited for our Drama Club and International Thespian Society Honors organizations. They have been building over the last three years. At the end of the 2021-2022 school year, we graduated twelve Thespian members who were all honors students with at least a 3.0 or better. Enthusiastic about what we’ll see from our Drama Club and International Thespian council members!