The Boss in Mill Bay: Bruce Springsteen Night

Sunday, February 10, 2019 - By: Amelia H, Allard ‘20

Mr. Collis undeniably has nothing short of a passion for Bruce Springsteen. Thus, when three years ago he received “blank stares” from his students of AP Language and Composition upon his mentioning of “The Boss”, he decided to take action. And the rest, as the say, was history, 

Bruce Springsteen Night is an annual event for Grade 11 English students, and I can confidently say that I have never seen more denim in one time and place before, nor do I ever want to again. In efforts to help us achieve rock enlightenment, celebrity performers from around the metropolis of Mill Bay performed some of Bruce’s greatest hits. From Factory to Thunder Road, folky guitar to chilling harmonica, we covered all of the bases. Who knew our physics teacher, Ms. Olszewski, has a voice sweeter than the gingerale I now know Bruce Springsteen likes to drink? 

Although the vocal and instrumental performances were much appreciated, the goal of this evening was not simply to enjoy a nice performance, though that was a perk. Mr. Collis’ purpose for providing us with this cultural awakening was to expose us to the lyrical genius of this man who, at the end of the day, is nothing short of a poet. This week, headbands and denim jackets aside, we will use our newfound expertise to write a synthesis essay, comparing and contrasting a series of songs and essays written by and about Bruce Springsteen. 

Amid dissections of Shakespeare, Yeats, and the like, these kinds of activities help to keep English courses relevant to our daily lives, and subtly emphasizes the importance of poetry in a modern context. And at the end of the day, nothing makes us feel better than a little Rock ’n’ Roll, So thank you, Mr. Collis. 

Amelia H, Allard ‘20

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