A Controversial Play In South Williamsport

By Posted By: Nick Hughes , Valerie Tysanner | vtysanner@pahomepage.com

Published 07/01 2014 06:58PM

Updated 07/03 2014 10:04PM

Update- July 3, 2014-

Controversy continues  over the play dropped from a South Williamsport High School because of "questionable content."

Top school officials came to an open forum in Williamsport  on Thursday.

It was hosted by Equality Central PA as a way to improve dialogue about the L-G-B-T community.

For the first time school officials denied saying that "Spamalot" was dropped as a school play due to homosexual content.

Dawn Burch the school's drama teacher was also there.

She maintains that the comment was made and she has e-mails to prove it.

She says she will release them next week

South Williamsport, Lycoming County- The Monty Python Spoof and award winning musical comedy, "Spamalot" has made its debut on stages across the country.

But, it won't be coming to Lycoming County after all.

''I was very surprised, Sabrina Mussare, a Former Drama Student, said.

The South Williamsport High Drama Department licensed the play after it was given a verbal "ok" to put the play on in the spring.

But, then complaints surfaced after some community members learned it contained a gay marriage scene.

The school decided it shouldn't air after all.

The Superintendent didnt want to speak on camera, but he says the play simply isn't appropriate for the age group.

Saying many things would have had to be cut out including: foul language and gay marriage.

''I mean that's drama you know? It's better to get kids involved and know different types of dramas at a younger age,"
Sabrina Mussare said.

Sabrina Mussare just graduated from South Williamsport High.

She has many friends who are involved in the Drama Program.

''I have friends obviously that are gay and obviously I would like it brought into the school district and opened up so people can get more used to it."

Other community members understand why the school decided the way it did.

''I think as a community because we do allow our 7th and 8th graders as part of it i think we have to be a little more concerned about it," concerned parent Manny Tsikitas said.

Manny Tsikitas has a daughter who will be going to South Williamsport high next year.

He says he would have gone with his daughter to see it.

''I think our community just society has changed a lot over the years and kids are being informed of things a lot quicker than they have in the past.

The Superintendent tells Eyewitness News this is the first time a play proposed by The Drama Department has not been accepted.

He says the goal of The Drama Department is to give students drama experience. and they can get the same experience through a lot of plays.

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