submitted by Sienna Lee, senior, New Hope-Solebury High School
The New Hope-Solebury High School theater group, Mask & Zany, competed in the 47th Annual Bucks County Playhouse Student Theater Festival on April 13th. This festival, sponsored by the Newtown Arts Company and attended by theater groups from 30 schools over the course of two weeks, is held to showcase the importance of theater arts to students, parents, and the community.
Each group brings 20-minute portions of shows that they have previously performed, and perform them in front of other students, as well as judges. At the end of each session the judges give feedback and award prizes.
The NH-S students performed segments from, “Little Shop of Horrors,” directed by Emily Adar, and “Godspell,” the school’s main stage spring musical.
Both shows were positively received by judges and peers, and the NH-S students returned with four awards. “Godspell” won Outstanding Musical Production, and chorus teacher and musical director, Mr. Thomas Bateman, won Outstanding Musical Direction for “Godspell.” Additionally, senior Nick Cassidy won Outstanding Actor for “Godspell,” his second award, and sophomore Josh Searle won Outstanding Actor for “Godspell” and “Little Shop of Horrors.”
The students were honored to receive feedback from esteemed professionals, such as Lou Volpe, Dani Tucci, and Jacquinley Kerr.
Theater director Ms. Melanie Pittner remarked that the experience was “…so satisfying. The feedback, especially from Mr. Volpe, was professional, helpful, and inspiring.” Hester Kamin, Director of Education, and Joann Bull, Education Manager, were the organizers of the event.
Mask & Zany is a program that has an extremely positive impact on NH-S students, as well as the New Hope community. Student theater productions give students an opportunity to express their creativity and share their hard work with the rest of the student body, as well as parents and anyone who is lucky enough to view these productions.