Visual & Performing Arts headline Spring activities

Dancing and singing during The Wizard of Oz (l-r): Chris Gehring, Daniela Perez, Raul Tamayo, and Brandon Beckelheimer.

While public schools are being forced to cut physical education as well as performing and visual arts programs, Miami Christian School continues to round out its academic curriculum with programs like those that play a critical role in a well-rounded education. The Miami Christian Symphonic Band recently returned from a competition at Universal Studios in Orlando, receiving a first place ‘Superior’ rating at the event.

The Drama Department tackled a full production of The Wizard of Oz, that included students from elementary, middle and high school grades in an amazing production. Playing to a standing room only crowd, Daniela Perez, Brandon Beckelheimer, Chris Gehring, Raul Tamayo, Alyssa Nieves, and Rebecca Naranjo were captivating in their roles as Dorothy, Tin Man, Scarecrow, Cowardly Lion, Wicked Witch of the West, and Glenda the Good Witch, (respectively).


Other Spring Concerts included performances by the MCS Jazz Band, the Symphonic Band, the Concert Band, the Elementary Band, the Choir and the Ensemble. The elementary school completed the concert series with a production on May 20.

In addition, the elementary awards ceremony featured a newly-formed band of enthusiastic fifth grade girls, who sang an original song they wrote, accompanied by their guitarist and drummer and encouraged by the music department.


Giving back is something MCS students take that to heart. Sophomore Kunal Khiyani is collecting 1,000 shoes in 30 days to donate to Soles 4 Souls, a Nashvillebased charity that collects and distributes new and gently worn shoes. Soles 4 Soles has become so successful in the distribution of shoes to those in need that they give out a pair of shoes every 9 seconds. The gift store, Sonrio, in Doral, partnered with Khiyani by donating 1,000 18 kgp necklaces with a cubic zirconia that were given to those donating a pair of shoes plus the dollar for shipping. The project provided students added incentive by kicking off just before Mother’s Day.

In other philanthropic efforts, the MCS High School Beta Club raised $1,800 for two children’s charities. Half of the funds were directed to LifeStraw, a non-profit that manufactures and distributes portable water purifier. With 6,000 children are dying daily from waterborne disease, Life Straw saves lives.

Sunil’s Home, the MCS sister orphanage in India, will receive the other $900 from Beta plus another few hundred dollars from elementary students, raised through the sale of herbs and vegetables from the organic garden and lemonade stand sales.


On the athletic front, the Miami Christian’s Lady Victor Softball team went on to regional quarterfinals, after becoming District Champions. MCS Victor Baseball team also won the District Championship and went on to regional quarterfinals. At a recent Victor Sports Banquet, students of all ages were honored and recognized for their athletic achievements throughout the entire year. Senior, Erick Ivan Mendoza will attend Capital University on scholarship to play baseball for the team that makes its home in Columbus, OH.

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About the Author

Gloria Burns
A graduate of the University of Florida with a major in Spanish, Burns has an extensive background in advertising, marketing and reciprocal trade, travel as well as non profit consulting and management. Active in many non profits, she received numerous awards across the community. Among her list of current responsibilities, Burns co-chairs two annual student recognition breakfasts for the Coral Gables Friends of Education; helps coordinate charity partners for the Westin Colonnade's Annual Give Kids the World Breakfast; serves on the board of directors of Doral Business Council; is Parliamentarian and serves on the board of the GFWC Coral Gables Woman’s Club; serves the board of the Rotary Club of Coral Gables and is Publicity Chair; and is a member of the Jr. Orange Bowl Committee. Gloria is also an active member of the Music Ministry at Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, where she sings in the choir. She can be reached at

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