Shelbe Overby – Student of Life


Kendel Ponchock, Writer

A walking Kate Spade collection passes you with ballerina grace and bright energy. She has a planner on her desk and things to do but will continue throughout her day with a smile and a water bottle filled to the brim. She is usually spotted with a script in hand, a face of the Drama Department here at MCHS who knows the ins and outs and will gladly share. That is who Shelbe Overby is. If she isn’t memorizing a monologue, she’s studying or doing homework.  “You could say I’m a busy girl,” Shelbe says as she closes her weekly organizer.  “But it’s what keeps me motivated.”


If you’ve seen a show at McCracken County High School, you’ve witnessed Shelbe in her natural habitat, the stage. “I have the honor of being able to say that I have been in every single show the MCHS Theatre Department has put on,” she says with a small grin. That’s a total of eight roles performed by Shelbe Overby on the Mustang stage.  Shelbe is a seasoned dancer at The Rhythm Factory School of Performing Arts, where she has practiced five years of tap, jazz, and ballet, 3 years of contemporary/lyrical dance, and two years of hip hop.  “Dance is an escape for me.  It’s one of the only things in life that I don’t tend to overthink,” she says laughing.  When asked how her passion for the performing arts originated, she giggles.  Shelbe has been on the stage since she was five years old.  “I guess you could call me a child prodigy.”

As a kindergartener, Shelbe was in a production of Charlotte’s Web at Market House Theatre as Joy the baby spider.  She hasn’t stopped since.  


If you want to hang out with Shelbe over the summer, you’re going to have to schedule an appointment with her in advance.  Every summer of her high school career has been spent learning how to better her craft at performing arts intensive camps across the country.  She’s an alum of the Texas State University Musical Theatre Workshop, Syracuse Summer College Program for Musical Theatre at Syracuse University, and Cincinnati Conservatory of Music Immersion Program, and The Performing Arts Project. During school, her passion for her art has lead her to being Drama Club president.


Shelbe packs her free time with extracurricular activities, yet still finds the time to study and maintain an all A grade status with a solid 4.0 GPA.  “School is important to me.  Education helps fuel art. So without intelligence, how can you really reach your full creative potential?” Her education doesn’t stop at just MCHS; Shelbe considers herself a student of life and is constantly learning from her experiences and surroundings. She is an avid volunteer at Kiwanis Club, Maiden Alley, and at St. Francis De Sales Church.


Right now, Shelbe is focused on taking the small but necessary steps toward a ca a successful career in the performing arts. She hasn’t yet decided which college is for her, but that decision will be made very soon. In ten years, Shelbe would like to be living comfortably in New York City while doing what she loves… performing. “I’ve dreamed of living in New York City my entire life. I’m determined to meet that goal one way or another.”
This is a woman with big aspirations. She has goals and she knows exactly how to meet them. McCracken county has many talented students, and Shelbe Overby is definitely one to keep your eye on.