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The Little Hawk

The student news site of Iowa City High School

The Little Hawk

The student news site of Iowa City High School

The Little Hawk

Staff Profile

PERFORMER PROFILE: Abril Bejarano Hamity

How theater shaped one City student’s past, present, and future
Yomi Hemley

Abril Bejarano Hamity ‘25 was six years old, roaming the Nolte Academy halls, when she heard about an Alice in Wonderland production. Excited, she decided to audition, practicing her audition song with her dad. Once making it into her first production, she immediately fell in love with theater.

“[Theater] is something I’ve been doing for a really long time, I want to say about 12 years now,” Bejarano Hamity said.

After starting theater at a young age, she has continued pursuing her love of theater consistently throughout the years.

“I’ve done 23 to 24 shows, just over the span of my lifetime, which is a decent amount. But I just kept coming back to it because I really enjoyed it,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Up until 2018, Bejarano Hamity had originally only considered theater, singing, and music as more of a hobby. Her mind changed when she saw Les Misérables on tour, motivating her to work on a new level.

“We went to see it, and I was like, ‘I want to do that.’ At that point forward, we started focusing on getting myself voice lessons and dance lessons,” Bejarano Hamity said.

As Bejarano Hamity continued to pursue music and theater, it opened her up to even more opportunities.

“I got to go and sing in New York at Carnegie Hall, which is a really big deal. It’s a place that [even] people on Broadway have yet to sing in,” Bejarano Hamity expressed.

Bejarano Hamity got the opportunity to perform in such a renowned place from her winnings in an international singing competition from people all over the world.

“[In the competition] I got second and the prize was used to perform in New York. Getting to do that was insane, and that was in my freshman year of high school,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Now as a junior in high school, Bejarano Hamity cannot imagine not being involved in the arts in some capacity.

“I’ve done it for so long, it’s weird not having it a part of my life. I’ve always constantly been in shows in some way or another. And so it’s really weird to not be in a show,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Bejarano Hamity has worked practice and rehearsal into her daily routine, making sure to keep time for voice lessons and show rehearsals. Despite this dedicated time commitment, it is not a burden for her.

“I practice music at home and I don’t think it takes time away from me. It’s because I really do enjoy doing it,” Bejarano Hamity said. “It’s not just a self-isolating thing, because I get to hang out with people a lot and have so much social interaction with many different people from different schools as well.”

On and off stage, performing has made Bejarano Hamity more comfortable with herself as well.

“In middle school, I was diagnosed with social anxiety. What’s funny about that [is] I’ve been told by many doctors that I don’t have stage fright. However, off the stage, I was terrible at talking to people,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Although Bejarano Hamity did not struggle onstage with anxiety, off the stage was a different story. Despite this, with the help of theater, she eventually got better at handling her anxiety.

“[Theater helped] me better myself personally and made me feel a lot more comfortable with myself. Especially because of the things you have to do up onstage. [Sometimes you have to] say a certain line that may be so bad and cringy but you just have to do it and have fun with it,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Past high school, Bejarano Hamity is not sure exactly where she’s heading. But she does know that she will major in theater or acting, with the goal of continuing with that as her future career.

“I really want to go to London. I’m already looking into having to do pre-screens, auditions, and scholarships, because you have to start early, especially for theater,” Bejarano Hamity said.

Although Bejarano Hamity has been committed to theater almost her entire life, she still has moments when she doubts herself.

“I think a lot of people don’t know what to do [in the future] or they’re not 100% sure. Up until now, I used to be 100% sure [that] I’m going to Broadway, [or] I’m going to do a movie,” Bejarano Hamity said “But sometimes you get into this pit of like, ‘What am I doing? Do I really want to go through with this? What if it’s not worth it in the end?’” 

Although Bejarano Hamity has had some doubts in the past, she also has instances that reassure and rejuvenate her love of theater. These moments are what help her get through her uncertainty at times.

“Recently, I was in City Circle’s High School Musical. After doing that show, I was like, ‘This is what I want to do.’,” Bejarano Hamity said. “I don’t know how to explain it, because you have that doubt and you’re like, ‘What do I do if it doesn’t work out, especially in this industry? Do I just [become a] waiter forever? Do I have to find a backup?’ But moments like those are really important to me to keep going.”

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Yomi Hemley, Feature Co-Editor
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