The Norah Morgan Memorial Award
Norah Morgan was an influential international ambassador of drama education for both students and teachers for over fifty years. In 1972, Norah Morgan worked with Des Davis in developing a vision for Carousel Players that continues to inspire students and teachers locally, provincially, nationally and internationally. The Norah Morgan Memorial Award honours her leadership and influence in enriching the lives of young people through the arts.
Norah Morgan with students
2018 Winner of the Norah Morgan Award
Carousel Players is proud to announce that the winner of the 13th Annual Norah Morgan Award is Ms. Teresa Ricciuti, a Grade 7/8 teacher at Steel Street Public School in Port Colborne.
Teresa Ricciuti and students from Steele Street Public School.
It is with tremendous pride that Carousel Players honours grade 7/8 teacher from DSBN’s Steele Street Public School, Teresa Ricciuti with the 13th annual Norah Morgan Memorial Award. Ms. Ricciuti will be recognized with this Award alongside her students and fellow faculty members on February 12. In appreciation of all Ms. Ricciuti does to promote the arts at Steele Street Public School, students in grades 4-8 will receive a performance of Carousel’s newest production This Will Be Excellent, compliments of Carousel Players.
“You can see the passion [Ms. Ricciuti] has for the arts” states Steele Street’s Principal, Mark Piazza, “from the most out going students to those who may be reluctant, Teresa can bring out the best in them; helping their self esteem and boosting their confidence.” This is precisely the reason Carousel Players established the Norah Morgan award in 2006.
The Norah Morgan Memorial Award recognizes elementary teachers who have made a strong contribution to the arts in Niagara schools. It is named in honour of internationally renowned educator Norah Morgan (1918-2004) who was a pioneer and champion of drama education for over 50 years.
“I am very honoured to be receiving the Norah Morgan Award!” says Ricciuti, ” All my life I have been deeply connected to the arts.” Ricciuti herself was inspired by her high school drama teacher, Mr. Peter Moore, making this award even more meaningful to her, “He encouraged my creativity and opened my eyes to a world in which drama is expressed throughout life.” And a great deal of Teresa’s life has indeed been dedicated to her love of the arts; Throughout high school and university Teresa performed in Grease, Little Shop of Horrors, The Rover, Bye Bye Birdie, Streetcar Named Desire, The Misanthrope, and more.
Bestowing this award on Teresa is of particular significance to Carousel Players as well. Beginning in 2003, Teresa served as the Theatre Camp Coordinator for Carousel Players Summer Theatre School for four years, and has since offered her own Summer Theatre School camps. This award marks Teresa’s 15th anniversary being involved with Carousel Players.
“I feel very strongly about teaching students how drama conventions, skills, and techniques can help them in all areas of their learning,” says Ricciuti who also writes, directs and performs productions each year involving students in her class as well as the entire student body. Teresa’s students have performed The Jungle Book, The Grinch, Scrooge, December in our Town, and Pay It Forward to just name a few.
Teresa attended Brock University where she completed a triple combined major in Drama In Education, Theatre, and Dramatic Literature. In 2010 she completed teachers college and began her teaching career with DSBN in Grades 1-6 as a homeroom teacher, incorporating Drama into all areas of the curriculum as a median for a more hands-on and creative way of learning.
“Theatre is an amazing forum for bringing together a community of learners and students of all ages and abilities. It’s a great way to help our school feel connected to our community and our family members enjoy seeing their children excel and find a love of learning through the dramatic arts!” says Ms. Ricciuti.
Teresa Ricciuti’s students from Steele Street Public School
Nominations from all local Boards are accepted every year, as the result of Carousel Players’ partnership with the Niagara Symphony Orchestra and the Rodman Hall Arts Centre. Each organization celebrates elementary school educators for their commitment to arts education in specific disciplines: theatre arts by Carousel Players, music by NSO, and visual art by Rodman Hall.
Nominations forms will be available as of March 1, 2018 and will be accepted by the three organizations until June 30th, 2018.