a nn Ma r i e
g a r Di n i e r
Ha L s t ea D
by Macreena Doyle
Associate Professor of Performance and
Communication Arts Ann Marie Gar-
dinier Halstead has directed and acted
in plays. Now she has written one, with
children as the audience and overcom-
ing bullying as the theme.
Have You
Filled A Bucket Today?
is adapted from
Carol McCloud’s popular children's
book of the same name, which delivers
an anti-bullying message.
The organization Peaceful Schools has
plans to perform the play at schools
throughout central and northern New
York this spring and during the 2013-
school year. The organization
seeks to lend support in creating caring
and safe communities," by providing
social-emotional learning and bully-
ing prevention services and support
Halstead says she was "thrilled" when
McCloud gave permission to adapt the
book into a play. In both, children learn
about the Golden Rule. Set at a summer
camp, the 45-minute play includes the
Bucket Filling Fairy, or BFF, who speaks
in rhyme, and Professor Smarty Pants
III, a science professor "who loves to
talk about himself." Her inspiration for
that character? Halstead diplomatically
says that he is a "composite."
Gifford Family Theatre, a professional
youth theater company in Syracuse,
presented a workshop production of the
play in July 2011, with Halstead serving
as playwright-in-residence, revising the
script in rehearsal. In December 2011,
Halstead directed St. Lawrence students
in the updated version of the play in
a performance for elementary school
children in Canton.
There was a huge response to both
productions,” Halstead told the
town Daily Times
. “
Schools, parents and
others seem eager for creative ways to
address bullying.”
The play and the book are available for
purchase on Halstead's website, Bucket-
La Urentian pOr tr ai t
s chools, parents
and others seem
eager for creative
ways to address
spr ing 2013 | st. Lawrence Universit y Magazine 17