Friday, November 11, 2011


A moment to share:

Last night, I experienced the absolute magic of observing (and video taping thanks to Bett Wilson Foley) the 8th grade performance of "Take a Stand" at Margaret Pollard Middle School.

This was a play that Serena Ebhardt & David Zum Brunnen of EbzB Productions produced as one of ChathamArts' residencies in the schools. The residency was made possible by Briar Chapel Development and the NC Arts Council.

EbZb Productions taught 8th grade students to conduct oral histories and then to craft the stories they gathered into a play. The kids and host teachers wanted to focus on the topic of "bullying."

During their interviews, they gathered stories about homosexuals in the military, domestic violence, and the Civil Rights Movement (one of their African American teachers shared a story about going to a restaurant that refused to serve him b/c of his skin color).

The kids were so into it! They also each selected a pop cultural slide that resonated with them around the topic of "standing up for one's self, for others, and for what's right." All of the slides were compiled into a slide show that ran as a back drop/set for the performance.

The teachers were elated and said that they had never seen their students open up so honestly to one another before.

One of the host teachers, Elizabeth Carriel, said that she "has no doubts that these kids will always remember this experience."

I just had to share with you the inspiration I felt. Not all of you are able to attend every event that ChathamArts hosts, but you should be able to revel in the joys of each.

Like these inspiring 8th graders, you and the arts give our community hope and a reason to stand.
-Molly Matlock, Chatham Arts Council

Monday, October 24, 2011

Press Release: Take A Stand!

Molly Matlock
Chatham County Arts Council

For Immediate Release
Take A Stand!
Performance At Pollard Middle School

Chatham County, NC - Take A Stand!, an empowering performance written and performed by Pollard Middle School 8th graders, will be presented Thursday, November 10th at 7 p.m. in the Pollard Middle School auditorium. Admission is free. The general public is encouraged to attend the performance and a discussion on the topic of bullying.

Chatham County Arts Council is the recipient of a grant from the NC Arts Council for this Arts-In-Education initiative. Teaching Artists from Chatham County based EbzB Productions ( were chosen to help Pollard Middle School students create a play. This production is based on oral histories collected from citizens of Chatham County. The local citizens were interviewed about their personal experiences with bullies. They were also asked about their experiences of standing up for others against bullies. Students transcribed the interviews; edited the transcriptions; created a script, visual presentation and publicity materials for the production; rehearsed the play; and blogged about the experience. To view the blog, visit:

Students will perform Take A Stand for their peers during the school day on November 10th. Elizabeth Carriel, Michelle Rotante, and Mary Clayton Liles, teachers at Pollard Middle School opened their classrooms to EbzB Productions' teaching artists in order to integrate the performing arts with the Language Arts curriculum. The November 10th, 7:00 p.m. performance will offer this unique production to the general public. Families who will have students at Pollard Middle School during 2012 – 2013 are encouraged to attend.

For more information, please contact Molly Matlock at ChathamArts: 919-542-0394.

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Photo Album - Take A Stand!

Take A Stand! 
Pollard Middle School 
Documenting the process

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Take A Stand! Script.

Take A Stand!

An empowering performance written and performed by 
Pollard Middle School 8th graders 
based on oral histories from citizens of Chatham county, NC
Be a hero. Take a stand!

in association with EbzB Productions

sponsored by Chatham County Arts Council
with funds from the North Carolina Arts Council

originally performed November10, 2011 

(c) ebzb productions

Take A Stand – Keynote Presentation.
Music: Stand By Me (Playing for Change)

  1. Take A Stand!
  2. It happens at school.
  3. It happens at work.
  4. It happens on the football field.
  5. It happens in the military.
  6. It happens on the playground
  7. It happens at home.
  8. It happens at church.
  9. It happens everywhere.
  10. Take A Stand!
  11. It happens to girls.
  12. It happens to boys.
  13. It happens to adults.
  14. It happens to children.
  15. It happens to women.
  16. It happens to men.
  17. It happens to everyone.
  18. Take A Stand!
  1. They want attention.
  2. They want power.
  3. They want control.
  4. They want an audience.
  5. They think it's cool.
  6. People do hateful things for no other reason than it being a source of joy for them.
  7. It's “fun” to be in the group.
  8. They calm their own insecurities by picking on someone else.
  9. They may be victims themselves.
  10. Take a Stand!

  11. He was a Marine.
  12. She had cerebral palsy.
  13. He couldn't see.
  14. She had a HUGE nose.
  15. He was gay.
  16. She wasn't part of the clique.
  17. He was accused of cheating.
  18. She didn't want to play in the orchestra.
  19. He had AIDS.
  20. She was hispanic.
  21. He had to work on Christmas.
  22. She had autism.
  23. He was black.
  24. She was the new kid.
  25. He was small and a little different.
  26. We are all different.
  27. That's what makes us the same.
  28. Take A Stand!

  29. Bully!
  30. Mental anguish is as bad as physical pain.
  31. It made me feel angry that they were treating her this way. She was much more.
  32. Sometimes what others see is different from the truth.
  33. They almost ended his military career.
  34. They were jealous
  35. They harassed her online.
  36. I knew the truth. She was falsely accused.
  37. Never make an eight year old mad!
  38. They would say things behind his back.
  39. They were pushing me into lockers.
  40. They told me I sucked.
  41. They excluded me.
  42. They would put me down to make themselves feel good.
  43. It was everywhere I turned. Online and in class.
  44. I felt like I couldn't “Take A Stand!”

  1. Be a hero.
  2. Have courage.
  3. We always stood up for each other.
  4. We took up for each other.
  5. If anybody confronted us about anything, we took each others side.
  6. If my kids ever had trouble with a friend, I would help them out.
  7. All it took was a little girl telling him to stop.
  8. I said, “This is wrong.”
  9. She probably doesn't even know I stood up for her.
  10. Years later I saw him, and he thanked me.
  11. It affected me in such a way that I felt like I needed to do something about it.
  12. A co-worker stood up for me.
  13. I was asked to speak at his funeral. People thanked me for standing up for him.
  14. Stand up for yourself and for your friends, before it is too late.
  15. Take A Stand!

  1. Empower yourself.
  2. Empower a friend.
  3. Walk away from the bully.
  4. Have more respect for each other.
  5. Do not just stand there and do nothing. That makes you worse than the bully.
  6. People can be biased. Get the facts.
  7. There are kids that don't have a friend to stand up for them.
  8. They need you.
  9. Walk with the smaller kid.
  10. Take A Stand!

  1. Stand up for yourself.
  2. Talk with confidence.
  3. Ask them to stop.
  4. Notify a friend or authority.
  5. Direct eye contact.
  6. Use your sense of humour.
  7. Play it calm and cool.
  8. Don't share information online or in an email.
  9. Offer to talk to an authority on a victim's behalf.
  10. Throw your shoulders back, stand up straight, look them in the eye.
  11. Take A Stand.

  12. Say, "Hey, knock it off, that's not cool."
  13. Say, "C'mon, let's go." and get a couple of your friends to join you in taking a stand for the kid.
  14. Tell your friends ahead of time: "I'm going to stick up for that kid. Will you do it with me?"
  15. There are great people in this world. If you stand up for them, they'll stand up for you.
  16. There is always someone there to help you.
  17. They will need us and we will be there.
  18. Take A Stand!

  19. The statistics are grim.
  20. People who are bullied are depressed.
  21. They suffer anxiety.
  22. Some even consider suicide.
  23. Some follow through.
  24. But it gets better.
  25. Until it does, we must be the heros.
  26. We must speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.
  27. We must stand up for those who cannot stand up for themselves.
  28. We must Take A Stand.
  29. Take A Stand!
  30. Take A Stand!
  31. Take A Stand!
  32. Take A Stand!
  33. Take A Stand!
  34. Take A Stand!
  35. Take A Stand!
  36. Take A Stand!
  37. Take A Stand!
  38. Take A Stand!
(V Formation)
Curtain Call

Kaitlyn J

  I really enjoyed the exercises that we were shown to our class today. Serena showed us voice exercises, such as using the tip our our tongue and our throat in speech. She also taught us face exercises, such as little face and small face. They both definitely made our class more awake and alert. I'm thrilled to start working with EBZB and I think the process is going very well! Thank you!



Please blog about your experiences in the classwork with David zum Brunnen on how to conduct an interview to gather oral histories.  

We'd also like to encourage you to blog your own stories about time when you personally took a stand for someone, or someone took a stand for you.

Thank you for all the great compliments on our performances of The Wrights Of Passage and War Bonds!  
You are an amazing audience!

-Serena and David

Friday, October 21, 2011

Donnie W. Interview with Serena from EbzB Productions

Donnie's Interview with Serena Ebhardt, Teaching Artist of EbzB Productions

Colby S.

One day when I was riding home from school, and then our bus stopped. A little girl was crying because some 6th graders started to call her names. The bus driver sent her back to her seat. The sixth graders still were picking on the little girl, so I went and sat with her. I sat with the little girl got off the bus, and the sixth graders didn’t say anything to her again.

Jacqueline H.

I really enjoyed the exercises that were shown to the class today. Over the summer i participated in a musical theatre production at Kenan Music Building. Our warm ups were a crucial part of the production. The formation of consonant and vowels were a key component in the clarity of the words that were spoken. When acting it is imperative to be completely comfortable with yourself so you can accurately portray the emotions or actions scripted. The dramatic arts are an incredibly wonderful thing to be presented to students, which we have unfortunately not had the opportunity to do at our school. I am so excited that we are going to be privy to this program, and would like to thank you for bringing this to our school.

Monique H.

I thought it was fun learning about acting tools!!


Donnie Williams

Our day warm up acts and interview with Serena