Junior Theater Festival – 2014
CONGRATULATIONS to our Gwendolyn Brooks
Middle School BRAVO students that traveled and
performed at the National Junior Theater Festival!
For the 5th consecutive year this cast of 50 hard-working, passionate 7-9 graders earned the TOP coveted award of OUTSTANDING PRODUCTION for the adjudicated performance of ANNIE, Jr.!! For one group to earn this award 5 years in a row is unprecedented! 96 schools from 26 states were represented at the world’s largest musical theater festival exclusively dedicated to kids ages 8-18.
Rehearsal of Annie before the Adjudication
The Outstanding Production honor earns you the opportunity to perform one selected number at the Awards Ceremony on Sunday. Our Orphans knocked the socks off of 5,000 people with Hard Knock Life – instantaneous thunderous standing ovation – the coolest thing ever!!
In addition to top honors, 8th grader Aidan Lenehan won the Freddie G Award for Excellence by a Male Performer! Lenehan and 8th grader Lucia Rodriguez-Nelson were named All Stars and performed on stage with All stars from the other 96 groups. 8th grader, Scott Smith was name a Technical All Star and was assigned to work with the professional JTF staff on the New Works showcase and the Awards Ceremony. 13 BRAVO students were honored with the opportunity and selection to audition for the Choreography DVD: Cait Egan, Lucia Rodriguez-Nelson, Kay Mabwa, Sophia Zinger, Aidan Lenehan, Paul Johnson, Morgan Varnado, Evelyn Cappelli, Grant Reynolds, Lucy Foreman, Georgia Kay, Caitlin Kenoian & Drew Krueger. Nine of the kids made the final cut and will have the opportunity to be a part of the summer 2014 Choreography DVD being filmed in NewYork City!
BRAVO was one of only four groups honored to perform and close the 2014 JTF New Works Festival Showcase on Saturday evening for the 5,000 festival audience. The BRAVO cast literally brought down the house with two selections from Legally Blonde, Jr.!! The deafening roar of applause on the final note of Legally Blonde was truly breathtaking and inspiring. Our students were astonishing ambassadors for student across America and embraced such immense responsibility with maturity, poise and graciousness throughout the 4 day weekend.
BRAVO wrapped the weekend up with our annual visit to the Martin Luther King historical site, museum and birthplace on MLK Day! After our visit, the kids summed up their experience with the following words: “powerful”, “amazing”, “beautiful”, “emotional”, “grateful”, “moving”, “memorable”, “historical”, “courage”, “celebration”.
JTF is a celebration of young people and the transformative power of musical theater. This is the largest group to represent GBMS and the 6th consecutive year we have been invited to the festival. Please share your pride with these kids. They are so proud to represent our school, district and community!!! The phenomenal BRAVO Dream Team inspiring and creating the magic are: Choreographers Chelsea James and Kala Bruce, Musical Director Cameron Burgess (alumni of GBMS and OPRFHS), Costume & Hair Designer Lisa Morrow, Randi Orlin – Business Manager Extraordinaire and Tina Reynolds – Director.
Our award winning students include Violet Allscheid, Simon Boyle, Talia Brookstein-Burke, Evelyn Cappelli, Elsie Connell, Claire Cooke, Julie Cozette, Joshua Czuba, Grace Dalton, Collette Donlin, Maeve Doody, Cait Egan, Lucy Foreman, Anna Freivogel, Brian Gallagher, Ethan Gilbert, Lindy Harris, Haley Huckstep, Andrew Inksetter, Paul Johnson, Georgia Kay, Caitlin Kenoian, Andrew Krueger, Madeleine Lebovitz, Aidan Lenehan, Liam Loughran, Kay Mabwa, Claire Mack, Elizabeth Maguire, Haley Martens, Miranda Mazeiro, Paul Obrecht, Nora Paul, Sarah Powers, Emma Prescott, Grant Reynolds, Clare Roarty, Lucia Rodriguez-Nelson, Nicolas Rosa-Palermo, Isaac Schaider, Katy Schuller, Logan Scofield, William Skubish, Ayanna Sloan, Scott Smith, Cole Tamondong, Annagrace Vargo, Morgan Varnado, Caroline Wolter and Sophia Zinger