Did you know that the Paladin Players perform all their main stage productions in both voice AND American Sign Language (ASL)? Learn more below.
The mission of the theater program itself is two-fold:
First, to empower the youth to engage with the world around them through the arts, while embracing a culture that takes risk without fear of failure.
Second, to provide excellence in theatrical programing that engages, challenges, and inspires the community in which we live and is accessible to all audience members.
South Plantation High School is recognized as the only cluster school in the Broward School District for the deaf and hard of hearing. Because of this unique status, theater program director Jason Zembuch-Young chooses to direct all productions in a style known as "Theater For The Deaf" with all main stage productions being performed in both voice and American Sign Language (ASL). Come to a show and experience a "Theater For The Deaf" production for yourself and discover the beauty of a performance in both voice and sign language!
Still photo from Hairspray
We are lucky to have an Artistic Director like Jason Zembuch-Young teaching and mentoring our students. Among his many accomplishments he has led SPHS to the highest number of Cappie Awards since it's inception (8), he has been awarded Broward County Arts Teacher of the Year (2013), he has been featured on numerous news programs, both local and national, and in 2019 he received an Honorable Mention in the Tony Awards "Applaud My Teacher" Excellence in Education competition.
In September of 2019 Theater Director Jason Zembuch-Young was featured on NBC6 News "Making A Difference" segment.
National recognition came in 2009 when ABC World News Tonight with Charlie Gibson featured our production of West Side Story!
This video is an interview with directors Jason Zembuch-Young and Michelle Terl (now the Artisitic Director at Parkway Middle School of the Arts) by local theater icon Iris Acker. The show was called "On Stage" at the time but since Iris's passing in 2018, the show has been renamed Spotlight On The Arts, which airs on BECON-TV (channel 19 on Comcast & UHF channel 63). This interview provides a great introduction to South's theater program.
This next video is also provided courtesy of BECON-TV. "Teen Talk" was a one-hour program of unscripted, real talk addressing sensitive issues impacting today's youth. The subject matter of this particular program is "Theater for the Deaf" and features a discussion with Directors Zembuch-Young and Terl along with several cast members, both hearing and deaf. The topic is November 2009's critically acclaimed and Cappie Award winning production of "West Side Story".
SPHS Friends of the Theater
South Plantation High School, 1300 SW 54 Avenue, Plantation, FL 33317
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All photos by Ms. Tina Oda
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