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MCCC Students in the "Mud Pie Players" Perform for Pre-Schoolers


Mercer County Community College students dressed up at mice, cows and hyenas and sang songs -- even about bandaids -- as they performed on May 2.

The students, who participate in an Oral Interpretation class, brought their speaking skills out to the community as they p
erformed for The Cherry Tree Club, a preschool serving homeless and at-risk children in Mercer County. They made children's picture books come alive by staging two comedic and colorful interactive performances embedded with positive messages for an audience of four year olds.

The month-long service learning project included students from previous Oral Interpretation courses who enjoy remaining involved.

MCCC's Mud Pie Players perform for area children on May 2. Pictured, top row (left to right), are Alison Noll, Pat Cullen, Corey Page, Dickson Gan, Dillon Kelly, Andrew Cosma, Nick Pollak, Tim Lyons. Pictured, botton row (left to right), are Sabella Lichtman, Daniela Cicchino, Crystal Myslinkski, Alex DeLiberto and Nikki Lichtman.

An upper level elective course,
Oral Interpretation focuses on the study of literature (poetry, prose and non-traditiional forms) specifically through performance. The course runs each spring and offers an opportunity for Communication majors and non majors who have successfully completed Public Speaking and want to do more.

"The benefits of the course for students are huge," says Associate Professor Kathi Paluscio. "They study literature, develop vocal variety and speaking skills, manage communication anxiety, give back to their community and create a service learning entry for their resume." Paluscio has been teaching the course and running the service program for six years.

Paluscio said the May 2nd show was extremely well received, and as soon as it was over, many of the children were already repeating some of the sounds and lines, much to the joy of the players.