SIUE Theater & Dance Alum is Missouri Thespians Educator of the Year

In January, SIUE Theater and Dance alum Alex C. Moore was awarded the 2018 Judith Rethwisch Outstanding Theatre Educator Award. The award is presented to a deserving teacher who exemplifies the best qualities of a teacher within their building, district, and community. Students nominated Moore with support from Mehlville High School and District Administration. The Committee considered all nominations from across the state, with Moore being the youngest to receive the award.

Moore, an SIUE College of Arts and Sciences graduate, as a part of the Theatre Performance, returned in 2011 to obtain his certification in Theatre Education. “On both fronts, SIUE was there to make sure I was career ready from the moment I graduated. My training to become a working professional Theatre artist in the industry and the skills working with the Secondary Education department made sure that I knew how to handle the ups and downs of life outside SIUE.

“Working with Lana Hagan as my Theatre Education mentor and adviser, provided me with a wealth of information on how to walk into a school/ district and advocate for the arts and for the needs of every student. Lana gave me the phrase “if it is good for the student”, which I use every day in my classroom and to justify the needs of my program. I could not have done it without a strong mentor like Lana,” said Moore.

The award comes after 4 years of teaching Theatre at Mehville High School in St. Louis, Missouri. Now the Theatre Arts Director, Alex hopes that Mehlville continues to see the impact of Arts Education on student’s lives and the importance of the Theatre program. “At that same conference, my students performed a one act play, participated in 20 different technical and performance activities, interviewed for performance and technical scholarships, and advocating for why arts matter in other career fields. To Mehlville, they brought back a scholarship (named after SIUE alumni Marti Fowler), 3 Superior ratings for technical theatre individual events, and 1 scholarship finalist. Their work far outshines my award, and I couldn’t be prouder of their work,” adds Moore.

Melhville High School senior student, Cassidy Hayden presented the award to Moore with the following message.

“Mr. Alex Moore took over Mehlville’s Theatre Department and Thespian Troupe my freshman year, when it was only a handful of students in a brand new auditorium. In just three and a half years, Mr. Moore has fostered significant growth to our department. It now has dozens of active members and 2016 saw our largest ever class of inductees into the International Thespian Society. His focus on creating an arts community throughout the district is evident. Mr. Moore has helped write curriculum for middle school theatre programs and created an after-school middle school enrichment class taught by a Mehlville Alum that was so popular another class needed to be added. He has taken on the unofficial role of making sure our auditorium stays organized and runs smoothly, and resurrected the Theatre Workshop classes so students can learn that there is more to theatre than just rehearsal,” said Hayden

The nomination comes from the 2017-2018 Officers of Thespian Troupe 5022, with The Missouri Thespians and the Educational Theatre Association being the deciding committee.

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