By Keane Muraoka-Robertson
Performing arts teacher Ted Walch will be featured on the Oprah Winfrey Network in June as part of a series thanking individuals of various professions.
“It is not the kind of thing that I would ordinarily have been a part of,” Walch said. “It’s so, in many wonderful ways, not like me that I kind of like it. It will be fun to see the final results.”
“Originally they told me, ‘There is going to be something on the Oprah Winfrey Network that is going to be about you,’” Walch said. “I said that if it is something the school is good with, then I’m good with it. The next thing I heard was that it was a competition among 50 teachers from 50 different states and that there would be documentaries done on all of them, but only 10 would be chosen.”
A camera crew from OWN spent a day on campus filming Walch for his documentary. They visited his Cinema Studies Class and a rehearsal for “The Laramie Project,” the winter play. They also interviewed Nick Lieberman ’11, his former student, and President Thomas C. Hudnut.
On Jan. 8, OWN hosted and filmed a pep rally in Hamilton Gym for students, faculty and alumni to show their support for Walch.
Walch originally thought that he was competing to be featured on OWN. However, OWN planned to feature him from the very beginning when they had approached the school in August. OWN created the fake contest so the camera crew could film Walch’s reaction during the pep rally, where he found out he would be on the show.
“It started as though it was a pep rally with Alex Rand-Lewis ’12 being head Fanatic,” Walch said. “Then the video with Jason Segel ’97, my former student, came on. All these people started singing a thank you song and then these kids who used to go here came out and started dancing with them. Slowly but surely, I started to figure out what was going on.”
According to Walch, about 30 professional dancers were used in the musical number.
Recent graduates Kathryn Gallagher ’11, Max Sheldon ’11 and Beanie Feldstein ’11 attended.