Making A Difference - Andre Boudreau
In 2010, André Boudreau started the Reader’s Theatre for third graders at the Block Island School. It was in part to help build his own son’s reading skills and confidence, as well as other young students, and in part for something fun to do — outside of school. Plus, André loves acting; he’s been an actor since 2004.
As soon as he started the theater, everyone wanted to sign up — he had 15 kids waiting and wanting to act. Well, why not? The group formed with a wider age range and they started meeting in the Rescue Building, where a new name was born — Drama 911. With the help of Tracy Heinz, the group has put on four plays to date at the Harbor Church: “The Best Christmas Pageant Ever,” “I Hate Shakespeare,” “Southern Belles” and “Away in the Manger.”
From rehearsals to performances and everything in-between, André has spent his free time turning something he loves into something he can share with this community and with the young people who live here. Since the start of Drama 911, several of the kids have participated in off-island acting and casting calls, including acting in a Wes Anderson film — “Moonrise Kingdom”— that was shot in R.I.
“I love doing it — it’s so great — that feeling of we did it!” André said. But adding: “I could not do this without the help of a lot people in this community.”
He would love to have a home community theatre, year-round. He also envisions having a Summer Stock Theatre, where plays are put on for a few weeks in the summer, but something that a community theater can work on in the winter months. He suggested watching the film “Tales From Summer Stock” which will be available at the Island Free Library soon.
André’s efforts and passion to provide unique experiences and activities are exactly what Block Island needs. So, thank you, André!