(Marriage) Suite life of Daria Kerschenbaum


Daria Kerschenbaum, a singer, writer and award winner, began exercising her passion for the arts at a very young age.
In 2009, she began practicing lyrical, jazz, ballet and tap dancing at the JCC Bender School of Dance. Kerschenbaum still attends practices and hopes to continue learning. “It’s really great learning here. I’ve been dancing with the same girls for a long time and I have a great relationship with my teacher,” she said.
At the age of 12, Kerschenbaum began participating in the Kay Krekow of the American Center for Puccini Studies.
Over the past six years, she has performed in concerts, recitals and productions at the American Center, including La Bohème, She Is Music, Le Villi, P.S. Mozart, Cendrillon (Viardot) and Bastien und Bastienne. She is the winner of the 2016 Shirley Rabb Winston Scholarship in Voice for 16-to-18-year-olds. In addition, she performs in a recital series at the Charles E. Smith Life Communities during the summer.
Kerschenbaum is actively involved in productions here. In 2014, she was a part of the ensemble for The Drowsy Chaperone and in 2015, Kerschenbaum was in the ensemble for Mary Poppins. “I loved being in the ensemble because of the people that were in it. We spend days together and we all have similar fashion senses, so we bonded well,” Kerschenbaum said.
She played the role of “Karen” in the 2015 production A Darker Shade of Closure. She was the stage manager for Legally Blonde, and is the student director for the recent fall play. ”As a student director, you get to create something completely special with the actors and they bring their ideas and I bring mine, and in the end, we make something so unique,” she said.
Kerschenbaum has written an award winning one-act play called Marriage Suite. This play is about a new couple, Kenneth and Brynne, who forge a companionship that defies society’s norms for relationships. “The idea for this play stemmed from the fact that our society doesn’t always appreciate really intimate friendships that aren’t romantic, so I wanted to address that concept in the play. I also wanted to try my hand at writing some 1984-esque writing, since I have always love dystopian novels,” she said.
This one-act play was the winner of the 2015 Center Stage Young Playwrights Festival, awarded development with Center Stage’s Associate Artistic Director/Director of Dramaturgy and a public reading. Marriage Suite was featured in the Montgomery Playhouse & Silver Spring Stage One-Act Festival.
For her Senior Independent Project as a part of the Arts & Humanities Signature Program, Kerschenbaum is writing, producing, performing and designing an immersive theatrical production called Rat Race, which explores the power of theatre as a tool for social change.
Kerschenbaum is the co-president and founder of Project Mystique, a feminist and gender studies club. “With this club, I hope to show people that there are ways to improve gender equality and that feminist issues are very intersectional. We want to collaborate with many other political organizations and clubs because feminism affects everybody,” she said.


Smriti Gupta

Front Page Editor