By Rick Garrick
CURVE LAKE FIRST NATION – Raina McCue is aiming for a career as a performance teacher after being mentored by a performance art teacher for APTN’s upcoming Dream Big documentary series.
“That really helped me realize that is what I want to do,” says the 13-year-old Grade 8 Woodville Elementary School student who has years of experience in singing, dancing and performing in theatre productions. “It was so fun and I was like, if I could do that every day.”
McCue’s learning experience with the performance art teacher at a university in Montreal was filmed by the Dream Big TV crew on Dec. 8, four days after a day in her life was filmed in Woodville, Bolsover and Beaverton, beginning with filming sessions at her school.
“They filmed my friend and I doing the morning announcements,” McCue says. “From there we went down to the gymnasium (where they filmed) me singing with my friends to practice for the Christmas concert.”
McCue says her classmates found the TV filming sessions to be “funny”.
“But they thought it was cool at the same time,” McCue says. “That has never happened at our school, so it was kind of awesome.”
After the school filming sessions, McCue was filmed with her family at home.
“I showed them sentimental stuff in my room,” McCue says. “By then I was kind of warmed up and I realized what it was like to have a camera in front of my face.”
The TV crew also filmed McCue volunteering with and assisting younger dancers at ballet and jazz dance classes at Studio 48 in Beaverton, where she started learning dance about three years ago.
“At first it felt kind of weird because I wasn’t used to it, but then after a while it was really fun,” McCue says about being filmed. “It was like exciting.”
McCue first auditioned for the documentary in the fall of 2013, but she didn’t find out she was chosen for one of the 13 Dream Big episodes until this past November. A co-production with Mohawk Princess Pictures and Rezolution Pictures, Dream Big aims to provide youth with a better understanding of their chosen career path: what’s involved, how to get there and why they will be great at it one day.
McCue says her family was “so excited” when she learned about being chosen for Dream Big.
“When we found out we were so happy,” McCue says. “I got to live out my dreams.”
Although McCue always wanted to be a teacher since she was in Kindergarten, this past year she refined her dream into being a performance teacher due to her interests in singing, dancing and theatre.
“I always thought I wanted to teach little kids, but then I started thinking ‘Why don’t I teach high schools and performance stuff like drama and music,’” McCue says. “So it’s a win-win situation.”
McCue says she was not always outgoing; she was “really shy” until about three years ago, when she began acting at Studio 48.
“That class just helped me get out of my shell and be more confident with myself,” McCue says. “Now I’m really confident and I’m not shy.”
McCue says her episode is scheduled to air on APTN “sometime around March”.