Student Art Spotlight: Heather Kirschner


Courtesy of Bill Wu

Heather Kirschner plays Cinderella in the winter musical production of “Cinderella.” The cast put on five performances of the show.

By Laura Sneller, Arts Editor

You may recognize her from her most recent role as the beloved Disney princess Cinderella in the WCHS fall musical or have seen her perform last spring in Blast, but it is no surprise that junior Heather Kirschner has set the standard for musical and theatrical performance at WCHS.

Kirschner’s passion for theater began when she was only nine years old when she saw the Broadway show “Wicked.” Since then, she has performed at charity galas and competed in the Future Stars Performing Arts Competition.

“I fell in love with everything about it,” Kirschner said. “After the show, I practically begged my mom to let me start singing lessons.”

Theater has been an extremely important part of Kirschner’s life, and she has acted in a numerous amount of shows. Her favorite production that she has been in was “Spring Awakening” because of its relevance to teens and its powerful message.

“Seeing how this show affected people showed me that art is a superpower,” Kirschner said. “It made theater something that I will never take for granted and I am thankful every day that I am able to do it.”
Since acting has played such an integral role in Kirschner’s life, she has had to perform many different roles. The difficulty of perfecting a character varies, as some of the characters she embodies have similar personalities to herself.

However, some of the roles are more complex and may have historical importance.

“The most difficult roles to perform are those that are real people or historical figures,” Kirschner said. “I start out by reading the script and making annotations, and then I do research on the person. I also call my acting coach, who lives in Florida, and we work through a lot of it together.”

Kirschner’s love for performing is not limited to just WCHS productions. Outside of school, Kirschner participates in the Young Artists of America and the Ovations Theatre Company. Last summer, she went to Stagedoor Manor, a three-week theater intensive program in N.Y. Afterwards, she went to the Young Artists of America Summer Theater Intensive for two weeks.

“My favorite part of putting on a production is the moment before curtain on opening night,” Kirschner said. “It is so exciting because you have no idea what is going to happen on stage, but you just have to let go, take a deep breath and walk out.”

After graduating from high school, Kirschner hopes to major in musical theater or acting in college. Next year, she plans to submit her prescreens and is preparing to audition for college programs. The process may be scary and nerve-wracking, but Kirschner maintains a positive and determined outlook.

“The feeling of being onstage at an audition or at a rehearsal is indescribable to me,” Kirschner said. “My biggest hope would be to be able to do this as a lifestyle.”