Published June 5, 2014
By Celica Castro, Journal reporter
Starting in December, students in the theatre arts program at Belton Middle School began working for a cause.
Their friend, eighth grader Reymond Rivas, was diagnosed with leukemia on December 28, 2013; this caused TJ Rumfield and Christian Pedigo to write and direct a play in order to help pay for their friend’s cancer treatments.
The duo wanted to put on something that no one has seen before in theatre and was exciting to take part in, so it was decided that Batman would make his way to the stage.
“I said, ‘Come on guys, have you ever seen a batman play in theatre?,” said Rumfield. “I tried to look it up, and I couldn’t find anything. No one’s ever done it before.”
This production was mostly put together by Rumfield and Pedigo on their own, with the help of theatre teacher Brittnay Roberts, whose room was used for auditions.
The play was given full dedication by both Rumfield and Pedigo.
“Originally this was just an idea that we thought we weren’t going to go through with,” said Pedigo. “We thought we were just going to write it and be (done), but then we decided that we weren’t going to be one of those people and that we were going to create a show.”
After casting, boys spent countless hours in the cafeteria working their hardest to make the show a success, and though the cast wasn’t usually all together at rehearsals, they worked around absences and kept on doing all they could to make the end result a success.
Thanks to students like Makayla Adkins, absences in bigger roles such as Catwoman were filled, and the show went on.
In the end, the play met their goal of raising $1,000 to help Reymond pay for his treatments. After the second performance, his mother was presented with the large handmade check.
This event shows the true, genuine beauty inside others. These two boys spent months working to help their friend, and without a doubt, their work was worthwhile.
“I remember the first day Raymond and I met, I saw him and went over to talk to him,” Ben Weaver, Rivas’ close friend, said. “I had a feeling we would be great friends. Over the summer we grew super close and did everything together. On December 28, 2013, Raymond was diagnosed with cancer and I immediately went to visit him. Throughout his treatments, his friends, family, and I have been here for him. We will continue to be here for him.”