Final bow for Shorewood High drama teacher
Shelley Walcott reports. Video by tmj4.comvideo
SHOREWOOD - There were tributes at Shorewood High School Saturday night as a local legend took her final bow.
Drama teacher Barbara Gensler is retiring after a nearly five decade career.
Gensler, who taught so many to take center stage, was humbled. “I was sick this morning, because I really didn't want this kind of focus," she explained. "But it's so great to see some of these kids. So that it's not so bad. And they're here for me, it's really great.”
According to Shorewood High Alumni President Jenny Hayden, “What's really special about today is that we are honoring Barbara Gensler's legacy, which was 47 years of teaching drama and English and presentation and acting.”
Gensler directed dozens of productions at Shorewood High and put the school on the map by creating a world renowned drama department.
Among her students, Journal Broadcast Group's VP and General Manager Steve Wexler and his wife Amy.
“We were in 'Anything Goes,'” Steve Wexler explained.
“Put on stage together," Amy Wexler said. "The director, Barbara Gensler told us to sit at the same table and act like we were in love.""And we took her very literally,” Steve Wexler added.
As she called it a wrap, Gensler offered this advice: “Never doubt yourself. All you have to do is put your time on task and you know that if you dig down deep you'll find your inner self, your truth. And when you follow your truth you can do anything you want.”
The theater at Shorewood High School will now be known as the ''Barb Gensler Theater for the Dramatic Arts.''