On Wednesday, May 3rd, juniors from DCP El Primero High School (DCP EPHS) had the privilege of seeing a matinee showing of Hamilton: An American Musical, at San Francisco’s Orpheum Theatre. Not only did the students enjoy the Tony-award winning musical about the life and times of founding father Alexander Hamilton, they were also able to speak with cast members during a Q&A before the show! Making the experience even more meaningful, however, is how exactly it came to be.
Tickets to the show were generously secured for our juniors by Michelena (pictured above) and Andres Valdespino in honor of their son and former DCP ARMS teacher, Dan Valdespino. Dan—a beloved Social Studies and Science teacher who valued meaningful relationships with his students—passed away over two years ago from heart failure. His parents acquired the tickets as a way to memorialize Dan and his passion for history while also giving back to an organization that mirrored his values.
Qualifying for these special Hamilton tickets was no easy feat, as schools and students had to meet numerous requirements. Between junior trip, spring break, CAASPP testing, and ACT/SAT prep, our juniors participated in a 5-day unit provided by The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, a group helping to facilitate student viewings of Hamilton. By the end of the five days, students produced an original piece of work—either a monologue, scene, or poem—related to the Founding Era.
At DCP, we believe there is no education without art, and we are grateful to Michelena and Andres Valdespino for providing for our students this unique experience to bring history to life while celebrating their son Dan. A DCP college scholarship has been funded by Dan’s parents, family, and friends in his name. Click here to learn more, or donate now by clicking the button below: