Senior Profile: Kelley Cochran

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Photo Courtesy of Kelley Cochran

"I'm a leader in the choir community as a senior, and since I'm taking three classes, all the Choral kids look up to me." Kelley said. "Looking back, I can see how much difference it made and how it made me a better person.”

St. Louis University | Nursing

“I feel so alive up here.”

The moment Kelley Cochran, senior, stepped onto the stage during her first play, that was what she thought. As a child, Kelley had watched plays often and began performing in third grade with a production of “Once On This Island.”  

“There were a lot of kids onstage at one time,” Kelley said. “I remember there was no room to move because there were so many people, so the audience part didn’t scare me at that point, but when I did more productions with less people onstage at a time, I did get a little stage fright. This is something I’m used to now as a performer. I’ve gotten used to keeping the fourth wall, being in that moment and being that character.”

Kelley has continued to pursue this passion throughout middle and high school, performing at KHS in shows such as “Once Upon A Mattress,” Student Written One Acts (SWIX) and “Wonderful Town.” 

“My whole experience of performing arts, in general, has been great, and I’m going to minor in musical theatre or theatre along with the nursing major,” Kelley said. “It might be hard, but I’ll try.”

Of all the productions she has been involved with, Kelley considers “Leaving Iowa” to be her favorite. In this show, put on by De Smet Jesuit High School, Kelley played three different characters: a hippie, an Amish girl, and a museum assistant.

“I would have to change costumes in-between, and the change from the Amish gal to the museum assistant was the most challenging because I had to get offstage, run to the other side and slip on my dress in a matter of 15 lines to get to my place on time,” Kelley said. “Then I would have to change from happy to being monotone. The hardest part about being a museum assistant was not to laugh and break character, because in that moment you absolutely hate your job and the audience is laughing at you.”

Choir is also a passion for Kelley, who joined her church’s choir as a freshman and later became a part of the a cappella choir at KHS sophomore year. Now, she is not only in both the a cappella and Vocal Jazz choirs, but cadets for Mr. Cannon’s Choral class and has sung in Best of Broadway, Taste of Jazz. She believes choir played an important role in growing her confidence.

“Sophomore year I remember being so shy in a cappella because that’s when I started, and Mr. Cannon told me, ‘You need to break out [of your shell.],’” Kelley said. “Now here I am, striving to get all these parts and solos. I’m a leader in the choir community as a senior, and since I’m taking three classes, all the Choral kids look up to me. Looking back, I can see how much difference it made and how it made me a better person.”