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Highland Rambler

Sarah Kurth Preforms to Her Max to Become Sterling Scholar

Billie Martinez

For a lot of people, their musical talents emerge when they are young when a parent tells them they have to pick up an instrument, however, for this year’s vocal performance Sterling Scholar, this was not the case.

Sarah Kurth picked up singing four years ago during the height of the pandemic. At this time her and her family were living in Spain where they had strict rules about leaving the home. Kurth and her sister could not leave the house for almost 50 days at a time. So in order to no go insane she began watching musicals. These gave her something to focus on and she picked up singing from there. She dove into everything from Hamilton to Elton John. For her, it was an escape from the realities just outside.

“I needed an obsession, I was stuck in my house all day and I found musical theater and it all spiraled from there,” Kurth said.

While at home singing provided distraction and release. It gave her something to focus on and devote her time to.

“It’s been really fun to have something concrete to work towards,” Kurth said.

As she explored this new outlet it also gave her a new form of expression and she discovered a new part of herself.

“She became very expressive as a result,” Kurth’s mom Rachel Posner said. “Anytime you’re singing it really touches a deep part of you and it’s an enlivenling practice.”

This then developed and led to her getting into theater. So the next year at Highland, she dove into the theater program in order to continue her dedication to her new hobby and has loved it ever since.

She first tried out for the theater program from Spain. And she put together an audition based on one of the songs she was singing a lot at that time.

“I’m not sure she would have become a total theater kid if it wern’t for that period of time,” Posner said.

During the 2022 fall production of Cinderella, she truly fell in love and knew musical theater was something very special for her. That year she was in the ensemble and a dance coordinator so she got to work with all kinds of theater.

“Highland theater is everything,” Kurth said. “It’s the greatest community. I feel so connected to the group and everyone in it. And its given me so many opportunities, not only to preform, but to build skill sets and to work in teams and do different kinds of theater, voice and acting. I really love it.”

For Kurth, theater not only provided a strong community but it sparked her love for drama, theater and preforming, and enhanced her love for singing.

“That kind of performance and preforming helps you really step into who you are, and explore who you are in a big and public kind of way and that has been really helpful for [Kurth] in terms of confidence and self image,” Posner said.

This theater community also provided a wonderful group of people for Kurth to connect and grow with as she developed her musical talents.

“Between IB and theater she has met so many wonderful, smart, talented, self-asured, people, and her communities are amazing,” Posner said.

Kurth’s communities and support are not lacking. She is also a student in the IB program, showing her dedication to growth, communication, friendships, and the ability to learn. This is another community she has found to support her through high school.

“She is a total community kid,” Posner said. “She thrives on friendship and being in a group that is comforting and that she feels comfortable in.”

While within the theater program as well as IB, she has really been able to track her progress as an actor and singer.

“One of my favorite things about music is that its super easy to track your progress. Even from song to song it’s very actionable so I’ve really liked that consistency and having a goal,” Kurth said.

Kurth is a very committed student who devotes herself to things and ensures she does them to their fullest extent. This is what happened with singing and theater. Although it had not been in her life until only a couple of years ago, it turned into something she cannot now live without.

“If she cares about something and works really hard at something, she will reap benefits,” Posner said.

Something very interesting about music for Kurth is that as she has stuck with it, she has seen herself grow in ways she never imagined. From locking herself in her bedroom listening to YouTube videos, up to being the very talented singer and performer she is today, music has shown her dedication to bettering herself and her skills. She has enjoyed watching herself grow and change as she learns more and more.

“Sarah has always been very sure of who she is but over these last four years I’ve seen her become a full blown woman, human, adult and she is a force unto herself,” Posner said.

This fall Kurth plans to attend Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania and study art history and museum studies as well as spanish language arts and literature with a minor in musical theater. While music is not something she will pursue majorly, she will continue to have it be a big part of her life.

“I’m proud of her, more than anything, for having the courage to follow her dreams and picking a direction and working really hard,” Posner said.



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