Jaemon Crosby prepares to take his final bow

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Angela Tessitore

Jaemon Crosby has played many lead roles in North Penn High School Theater productions. He will play Shrek this May, the major lead role in Shrek The Musical.

TOWAMENCIN- For three years, senior Jaemon Crosby has poured his heart and soul out under the gleaming lights of the North Penn High School auditorium stage. Crosby will take his final curtain call this spring, but with that final bow, he will take years of memories and growth with him. 

Crosby has always had an affinity for any kind of theater play or production. In third grade at Walton Farm Elementary, Crosby had the job of playing a short tune on the xylophone in a production called Dino Stars. 

“We did little dances like ‘if you want to be a dino drink, you got to be real cold’, and it was a mess but thinking back on it, I loved it then. I kind of got away from [theater,] but I came back to it,” Crosby laughed. 

Dino Stars was just a fun experience for Crosby at the time, but later on, as a high school student, his passion for theater and singing would once again surface. 

“I think still being really young, I hadn’t attached myself to it yet. I knew I had fun but also, you didn’t have the opportunity to do it every year in elementary school,” added Crosby. 

I think still being really young, I hadn’t attached myself to it yet. I knew I had fun but also, you didn’t have the opportunity to do it every year in elementary school.””

— Jaemon Crosby

With multiple fall and spring theater productions under his belt, the thought of Crosby playing sports can come as a surprise. Crosby played baseball in middle school and ran track until sophomore year. One bad experience after track practice that Crosby still laughs about today caused him to quit high school sports and pursue more musical interests at school.

Crosby has a nerve disorder that caused extra pain during track practice. One day after throwing up during practice, one could say it became too much exertion for Crosby. 

“I went up to the trainers and they were like ‘oh you’re fine’ and I walked down (the stairs) and I was talking to my mom on the way down. I was like ‘Mom I am about to quit.’ She said ‘okay.’ I went up to the coach and said ‘I quit. I said I’m sorry this is too much. My nerve disorder is getting bad. I quit.’ [The coach] said ‘okay’ and I never looked back,” laughed Crosby. 

Crosby’s comeback to the theater stage was in Pennfield’s production of The Little Mermaid in his freshman year. In sophomore year, Crosby played Thomas Jefferson in the fall production of 1776 and Perchik in the spring musical Fiddler on the Roof. His first fall show at North Penn was an especially unique experience while performing alongside his sister, Quira Crosby, during her senior year. 

“With my sibling, it was just another experience. It was so much fun because growing up, my sister and I argued a lot. Of course, we always got along, but we also argued a lot equally. Theater definitely brought us closer together,” said Crosby. 

Joining the cast of 1776 wasn’t Crosby’s original plan. He wanted to take time to adjust to a new school, but Quira and theater director, Mrs. Andrea Roney, convinced him to audition.

Crosby walks through Crawford stadium at Homecoming 2019, where he was later crowned Homecoming King.

“Now Quira and I have so many more experiences that we share together through these shows. These shows not only have a meaning just to me, but it has meaning between us,” explained Crosby. 

For Crosby, there is a moment in almost every NPHS theater production that can bring chills down his back. In the musical 1776, it was the ringing of the bells at the end of the show as the Declaration of Independence is signed. In Fiddler on the Roof, the moment was during a dance sequence with Madeline Burk, who played the character Hodel. 

“On the final night of the show, I remember there is a part where I lift [Hodel] up by the waist and I spin her around. I remember looking into her eyes right before we went up, and then I went up, I spun her around, and I can’t see her face then. I brought her down and she was crying and bawling her eyes out. That made me want to cry and brought tears to my eyes,” described Crosby. 

“I remember looking into her eyes right before we went up, and then I went up, I spun her around, and I can’t see her face then. I brought her down and she was crying and bawling her eyes out. That made me want to cry and brought tears to my eyes.””

— Jaemon Crosby

The fall play during Crosby’s junior year, Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, was a major point of growth for Crosby. He played the role of Demetrius, who is first viewed as a sort of jerk and chases after a girl just to impress her father, but Demetrius later falls in love with a girl who loved him all along. 

“That [show] was such a long journey from performing it here (at the high school), to performing it at the state conference, and then getting adjudicated at the state conference to perform at internationals. That final performance at internationals showed me there is really no limit to where I can go as an actor,” said Crosby. 

During the summer of 2019, the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream traveled to Lincoln, Nebraska for the International Thespian Festival. The cast rehearsed into the summer for the festival in late June. 

“I was satisfied when I performed here for the school, and I was able to develop more character, find more moments and that pushed me. I found something new at the performance at states, and then I was able to take the character (Demetrius) even further at internationals,” added Crosby. 

Acting and music has always been a passion for Crosby. He has dedicated hundreds of hours of his time rehearsing and perfecting the many aspects that go into playing a role in a theater production. Theater is more than just a hobby, but as a junior, Crosby was unsure if he wanted to pursue acting after high school. Crosby decided to dip his toes into his two other fields of interest, which are law and forensics. 

“I am a very indecisive person, especially when it comes down to two decisions. They can be the most simple decisions and I have huge trouble with that. I knew I either wanted to go into acting, forensics, or to be a lawyer… So I said ‘okay let me do something for each one of these,” explained Crosby. 

Crosby is taking a forensics course this year and does career study at a law firm in the area. Crosby applied to five colleges for their theater programs and has attended all his auditions. While waiting for acceptance letters, Crosby has the spring musical on the horizon and he is playing Shrek, the title character in the musical Shrek! 

Crosby is also part of NPTV, co-vice president of Thespian Troupe #5464, orchestra, chamber singers, Men’s Choir, SGA, and Link Crew.  Crosby’s list of extracurriculars is long but shows that his passions have led him to all different corners of North Penn High School. 

“I just love being involved in all of the school…I just love all these things that I do, and honestly, I couldn’t find myself to just let them go,” reflected Crosby. 

I will leave a footprint here. Some people say ‘I’m leaving high school. Bye, I hated it.’ But I loved high school. I didn’t have a terrible time here and I didn’t have bad moments.””

— Jaemon Crosby

“I know I am also going to miss this school. I’m going to miss everything, but also I’ve come so far and I’ve done all these things, Hopefully, when I leave, I left something here. I will leave a footprint here. Some people say ‘I’m leaving high school. Bye, I hated it.’ But I loved high school. I didn’t have a terrible time here and I didn’t have bad moments. I had such a fun time at high school and when I move on, I’ll still be able to look back and remember all the things I did here,” concluded Crosby.