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Connecticut High School Students Rise Up After Principal Halts Production of RENT


Trumbull High School has had their spring musical, the school edition of RENT, halted by school administrators.

On Monday, Nov. 25, first-year principal Marc Guarino called a Thespian Society meeting, announcing that their planned production of Jonathan Larson's hit rock opera would be cancelled, according to Howard Sherman.

BWW received a statement today from a Trumbull student, saying that Guarino put a stop to the production due to the "inappropiate" topics covered, and since, the student body has risen up, at first bent on starting a 'Rentbellion," though now taking a more measured approach.

"I didn't think 'Rentbellion' was going to help our case," Trumbull High Thespian Society president Larissa Mark told Sherman. "We had to create an organized response. I said that students should speak with their parents about this and not act brashly."

On Tuesday, Mark helped "organize a bunch of students with petitions to go around. In the course of two days, we collected 1,516 signatures, which is about two-thirds of our school. On Wednesday, I handed [the principal] the original copies of the signature sheets and surveys we'd done to the Trumbull community. We had asked whether people would support Rent and gave them a chance to make comments. We got over 400 responses and an almost overwhelming number of yesses."

Since the Facebook page has gone live, over 4,200 individuals have 'liked' the page, proclaiming their support.

Guarino, since halting the production after speaking with the assistant principals and reading the school edition's script, is reportedly reconsidering his decision, and will speak further on the matter on Monday when school resumes.

When the news broke, local ABC and CBS affiliates interviewed Trumbull students. Since then, members of the school's theater community have been featured in local magazines.

For Trumbull's RENT Facebook page, click here.

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