Warwick Valley Middle School

In the Fall of 2010, BullyBust teamed up with the Broadway show WICKED to create “Stand Up to Bullying,” a national bully prevention...Read More

Upstander Central

Welcome to Upstander Central, where you you can share your views, connect with other schools, and get key tips and encouragement from exciting guest BullyBust ambassadors to keep your Upstander Alliance going strong! View a personal message from WICKED cast members below, and watch a special re-enactment of one of the show's biggest scenes!

Connect with WICKED!

You asked for it! Youth from all across the country asked WICKED cast member Donna Vivino for her thoughts on Bully Prevention, see below for what she had to say!

  1. Did any of the cast of Wicked get bullied when they were in school. If yes, then how long did it last? If yes, then what did they do about it? —Stephanie Butler January 19, 2012 at 9:41am

    Donna: I was bullied in middle school. I came into the school in October and was the new girl. One of the boys in my class was very nice to me and I remember that there were a group of girls who decided after that that I was 'a flirt' and called me names like 'fat' or 'slutty' even though all I had done was talk to a boy. They threatened to 'kick my butt' and since they were the popular clique they also told everyone not to talk to me. I was so scared and wanted to fit in so badly I ate lunch in the bathroom to avoid them and then I also stopped dressing nicely or doing my hair. I remember telling my mother who told me I needed to be who I was and not care what anyone thought. It was hard at first but I focused on my studies, got involved in the choir and ignored the bullying girls and by the next year I had friends and some of those girls were nicer to me but I didn't care anymore either way cause I had my own self-confidence. I think that once I didn't allow the bullying to bother me some of the bullying went away and the bullying that DIDN'T go away no longer affected me cause I had my own sense of self. Hope that helps!
  2. Many people say that just standing by and watching someone get bullied is as bad as the bullying itself. What advice would you give to a child (or anyone) on how to have the courage to intervene and stop the bully?
    —Zoe January 24, 2012 at 4:27pm

    Donna: Well I think that by setting an example by not laughing if a bully makes fun of someone or to say 'hey that's not nice' can stop a bully. But it someone is being bullied PHYSICALLY and you feel that intervening could put you in harms way please get or call a teacher, parent or adult immediately. Also if you are witnessing bullying and it isn't stopping...tell an authority figure who can help.
  3. I am a high school student, and I have been bullied in the past. I know how painful it can be. However, when I sing or act, all of that worry and stress just falls right off, because I am doing what I love. When you were in high school, what was your creative outlet that you would go to when you needed to take the load off?
    —Caroline Thompson January 24, 2012 at 4:28pm

    Donna: Well Caroline....I am so glad that you have found an outlet to take the pressure off of the bullying. And I'm sorry that you have to deal with bullies. When I was in middle school I discovered the same thing actually! Doing the school choir and the musicals and plays completely took the pressure off for me and I found it very empowering. I think getting involved in something you love like the arts, or sports or math club can be so rewarding and build confidence. Keep it up!
  4. Hello. I’m 13 years old I’ve been a fan of Wicked for a while now, and the show has truly changed my life “for good”. My question for the cast is: I don’t have much talent when it comes to singing, but I can’t imagine myself doing anything else besides musical theatre. What advice do you have for me to pursue my dreams? Again, I LOVE the show; it gives me the courage I need to be myself no matter what my peers think or say. Thank you so much for being a part of this amazing show!
    —Gabrielle Depalo January 24, 2012 at 6:53pm

    Donna: Hello! I am so glad that Wicked has inspired you to be yourself and not worry about what anyone thinks. I'm glad you love the show thank you! I love it too. Well...if you feel that you want to work on your singing you can try to take voice lessons and practice as much as possible. In musical theater there is singing required but some people are better at dance as well. I would say though that everyone has to act so I would work on acting and dancing and singing and become well-rounded in all of those disciplines. Eventually your strength in at least of one the three will help you feel more confident about your singing and you'll be able to sing more freely. I hope that helps! I would say just keep yourself involved by participating in as many plays and musicals as possible and don't give up on your dreams!

Share Your Voice 6 Comments

stephanie butler January 19, 2012 at 9:41am

Did any of the cast of Wicked get bullied when they were in school.  If yes, then how long did it last?  If yes, then what did they do about it?

Reply
Ali Hayman January 19, 2012 at 6:04pm

I love this video and I have dealt with bullying but I love to sing and dance and Demi Lovato’s music. I look up to Demi Lovato because she dealt with bullying as well.

Reply
Zoe January 24, 2012 at 4:27pm

Many people say that just standing by and watching someone get bullied is as bad as the bullying itself. What advice would you give to a child (or anyone) on how to have the courage to intervene and stop the bully?

Reply
Caroline Thompson January 24, 2012 at 4:28pm

I am a high school student, and I have been bullied in the past. I know how painful it can be. However, when I sing or act, all of that worry and stress just falls right off, because I am doing what I love. When you were in high school, what was your creative outlet that you would go to when you needed to take the load off?

Reply
Gabrielle Depalo January 24, 2012 at 6:53pm

Hello. I’m 13 years old I’ve been a fan of Wicked for a while now, and the show has truly changed my life “for good”. My question for the cast is: I don’t have much talent when it comes to singing, but I can’t imagine myself doing anything else besides musical theatre. What advice do you have for me to pursue my dreams? Again, I LOVE the show; it gives me the courage I need to be myself no matter what my peers think or say. Thank you so much for being a part of this amazing show!

Reply
Gabrielle Depalo January 24, 2012 at 8:07pm

Hello. I’m an 8th grade student and I’ve been a fan of Wicked for years now. I can truly say that Wicked has changed me “for good”. It gives me the strength I need to be myself in a society where being different or believing in certain things make us outcasts. My question for the cast is: I want to make a difference in the word around me equality wise. Also, I don’t have much talent singing wise but I honestly can’t think of anything else I could picture myself doing than musical theatre. I want to know any advice you guys have for me on living my dreams and incorporating both into my life. Thanks so much!

Reply

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Clement Coulston is a student at the University of Delaware.  Inclusive youth leadership, authentic student engagement, and advocacy are passionate topics for him. It has been his experience that youth can be educated, empowered and lead to make the positive change in the world. Through his involvement on the Special Olympics Project UNIFY® National Youth Activation Committee, Coulston continues to spread the message that we need to look to our youth as agents of change! One of his favorite quotes is:
“If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader” by John Quincy Adams

Jenny Zhong is currently a junior at the University of Pennsylvania studying Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. She is a member of the National School Climate Council and was engaged as a student leader in the NSCC Summer Institute this past summer in July. She is an advocate for social justice, youth empowerment, and positive school climate. Aside from NSCC, she is also involved with Special Olympics Project UNIFY--an education initiative promoting inclusion and acceptance of students with disabilities in schools and communities. She believes one should “dream no small dreams for they have no power to move the hearts of men.”—Goethe

Hey Everyone! My name is Evan Heller and I am a freshman at the University of Massachusetts Amherst where I am planning to major in Social Thought and Political Economy doubled with Anthropology. I am a youth leader—a role I have acquired and trained for through my work with Special Olympics, my position on the national Youth Activation Committee and Massachusetts Youth Activation Council, as well as several positions in high school and college. I have attended many conferences in regards to education, equity, and leadership, and from this have gained many insights that I hope to be able to share with any who are interested!