He does not wear a colorful cape, or a mask to disguise his true identity and there are no symbols sewn onto his clothing. Mickey Kringer doesn’t need “All that jazz”, because to most locals he is a true superhero, dedicated to preserving the performing arts in Skaneateles.
Mickey is the Drama and Musical Director at Skaneateles High School, a job that he takes as seriously as he performs passionately. He said “I enjoy watching the kids grow and develop over 4 years, you see them mature into to their talents and gain self-esteem.”
Learning to develop self-esteem seems to be an important part of Mickey’s unique way of teaching. He injects it into his students, constantly reminding them to reach for the stars.
Mickey’s love of the performing arts really only began during his junior year in High school. He said he had a marvelous teacher, that dedicated her summers to the students through a program where they performed at a local dinner theater.
Though he recalls with a hearty chuckle, “I remember tap dancing in elementary school, not really sure what it was for, but i just remember tap dancing!”
Mickey is also the founder of Skaneateles Summer Theater or SST. The group began it’s adventure in 1998, formed by parents and students as well as various other talented members of the community, all for the love of the performing arts. The mission of the group was to raise the quality of life in the community by providing top quality, affordable musical theater performances for all ages. SST is completely self-funded through ticket sales and supportive patrons.
Annually, Skaneateles Summer Theater performs “An Evening of Broadway Romance” at the Springside Inn, in Auburn, NY. All proceeds go towards StageKidz summer theater camp sponsored by SST. StageKidz, for 6th through 9th graders is taught by local theater and music professionals and includes lessons in music, drama, dance and basic stagecraft. The kids produce and put on a full-scale performance at the end of their training.
Sponsored by the Town of Skaneateles Recreation Department, and SSA there is also a musical theater workshop for High School students, called FORTE. Two weeks of intensive study, students are committed to improving their level of performance and audition skills.
Mickey and his wife gathered the community together, but the true inspiration He says, “Came from the kids in the High School program and with nothing to do in the summer the interest was there.”
If this is not extraordinary enough, he is also the Musical Director at St. Mary’s of the Lake, at 81 Jordan Street in Skaneateles, NY. Mickey said “This is not just another outlet for my love of music, I am fulfilling my personal commitment to the church”
When asked if he is living his dream life, Mickey answered “Pretty close, I have always wanted to support the performing arts in my community.”
I think Mickey Kringer has done more than just “support” performing arts, he has put his heart and soul into preserving a special experience for us all.
As Mickey religiously tells his students, “Live up to your full potential no matter what you do, your abilities are endless.”
An important message we should all remember, delivered by a real life Superhero.
St. Mary’s of the Lake, 81 Jordan street, Skaneateles, NY
Read other Up Close & Personal Stories from this Series.