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UFT Players’ 20th Anniversary Celebration

Acting, singing and making fast friendships
New York Teacher
UFT Players (from left) Magaly Picard, Silvia Bodden, Donna Coles and Marjorie B
Cara Metz

UFT Players (from left) Magaly Picard, Silvia Bodden, Donna Coles and Marjorie Bryant say they enjoy performing and the camaraderie of the group.

“We’ve been around so long, we’ve created a family here,” retired teacher Lolly Yacker-Winderbaum said at the UFT Players’ 20th Anniversary Celebration. More than 80 UFT members, retirees, family and friends took part in the festivities on June 1 at union headquarters in Manhattan, catching up with old friends and new, watching a highlight reel of their productions over the years, and enjoying a meal and some impromptu performances. Their productions have names such as “Radio Daze,” “Bite the Bagel,” “What the Dickens” and “Star Wars Holiday.” Leona Ackerman, a retired teacher who belted out a song, said she’s been a member of the UFT Players for the entire 20 years. “It gives me a chance to express myself and show my talents for script writing, improv and stage design.” The UFT Players were founded when Yacker-Winderbaum, an associate chair of the group, had the idea to create a musical based on the experience of teachers and social workers. That original production was called “Chalk Talk,” and the theater group was born. When Yacker-Winderbaum moved upstate, Milton Polsky and Warren Wyss, the committee’s co-chairs, along with Elizabeth Rosen, an associate chair, kept it going and expanding. A newer board member, Ruth Scott, is a recent retiree who studied acting before becoming a science teacher. She says she incorporated acting into her teaching, so when she retired, she missed the creative outlet and turned to the UFT Players. “I like the people, it’s a lot of fun and it keeps you young,” said Scott. “It’s great to be with a group that enjoys the same thing.”

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Related Topics: Players